Thursday, July 26, 2007

License to Wed

What happened to the Robin Williams from Insomnia and One Hour Photo? He plays a good creepy. Even the slapstick Mrs. Doubtfire, or the "this is funny, but I really shouldn't be laughing" Good Morning Vietnam? I miss that Robin Williams. Now all we're getting is RV and License to Wed. John Krasinski, and Mandy Moore are the other two casualties of this below average romantic comedy. In my eyes, the genre is all but dead, and this movie is not helping it any.

In License to Wed, Ben (Krasinski) and Sadie (Moore) are getting married. Their plans hit a snag, however, when Sadie decides that she is set on being married by her old Reverend- Reverend Frank (Williams). Apparently the good father has the power to deny their matrimony unless they complete a course indicating that they are ready. This course includes robotic baby simulators (twins non-the-less), awkward situations with the soon to be in-laws, and of course, no sex. Throw this together with Sadie's attractive, male, best friend, and mandatory couples therapy sessions gone horribly awry, you have the making for a decent comedy. Unfortunately it just doesn't deliver.

As strong as Williams is in all of his characters, I think that Reverend Frank is the weakest link. Moore and Krasinski both play with a certain restrained humor, but Williams is his typical off the wall self. This zany character took me out of the movie, and just had me wondering: how does a reverend have mechanical babies that defecate a foul smelling toothpaste substance? Can he really spend three weeks spying on this couple? Doesn't he have a congregation to lead, and a church to run? Did he really follow them to Jamaica? My confusion goes on and on.

Director, Ken Kwapis, who is also a regular director/producer for the show "The Office" harvested the ranks of the TV series heavily for this movie- much to my pleasure. Besides Krasinski himself, Brian Baumgartner, Angela Kinsey, and Mindy Kaling all have small roles. These little additions helped me sit through the entire movie.

I'm not sure what this film is trying to say. Sure there are the obvious themes of honesty, accepting people as they are, and open communication. None of this seems to matter in this picture, however. It's almost like disappointing and utterly distasteful turn Jack Nicholson took in Anger Management. The ending twists are absurd, and dumb; and in this case- completely obvious.

Maybe I'm being too hard on the movie. There are some parts that I actually did laugh at, but not many. Most of these were at the befuddled charm of Krasinski, not the crazy antics of Robin Williams. This may have had some potential, but in the end, it was a very lackluster attempt at cinema. Maybe if we're lucky Williams has another creepy villain part with his name on it.

Watch the Trailer


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