Anyone but you

Anyone but you
Original title:Anyone but you
Director:Will Gluck
Running time:103 minutes
Release date:22 december 2023
Bea and Ben have all the makings of the perfect couple, but after an ideal first date, an incident cools their mutual attraction until their unexpected reunion at a wedding in Australia. They then do what any mature adult would do in this situation: pretend to be a couple.

Mulder's Review

Anyone But You attempts to weave a modern romantic comedy around the timeless themes of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. The film follows the tumultuous journey of Ben (Glen Powell) and Bea (Sydney Sweeney), two individuals who, after a disastrous first date, find themselves entangled in a fake relationship to navigate the complexities of a destination wedding. Despite its ambitious premise and nods to Shakespearean wit, the film fails to create a truly memorable romantic comedy experience.

One of the film's strengths lies with its lead actors, Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell, who bring undeniable charisma and appeal to their characters. The camera indulges in a rather open celebration of their physical attractiveness, reminiscent of 80s teen comedies, but unfortunately, this emphasis on aesthetics does little to enhance the overall substance of the story.

Shakespearean influences are evident from the outset, with the film generously peppered with quotations and references. However, the integration of these elements feels more like a checklist than an organic part of the narrative. The opening scenes feature a famous line from Romeo and Juliet written on a wall, setting a thematic tone that, unfortunately, the film struggles to sustain.

While Anyone But You promises a unique approach to the romantic comedy genre by exploring the dynamics of a false relationship born of mutual animosity, the execution is hampered by artifice and predictability. The central premise, had it been explored with more nuance, could have offered a fresh perspective on love and relationships, but instead it sinks into familiar tropes and dull humor.

The supporting cast, including Dermot Mulroney, Rachel Griffiths and Alexandra Shipp, are under-exploited, their characters serving more as plot devices than individuals in their own right. Despite the film's attempts to inject Shakespearean charm into the narrative, it lacks the quick wit and clever banter that define the Bard's comedies.

The fact that the film is set in Sydney, Australia, adds a picturesque backdrop to the romantic imbroglio, but it's not enough to compensate for the script's lack of substance. False relationships and romantic misunderstandings are familiar territory for the romantic comedy genre, and Anyone But You follows this path without offering any particularly innovative twists.

While the film isn't entirely devoid of humor, the laughs often seem forced, relying heavily on physical comedy and stereotypes. The attempt to infuse the film with a certain self-awareness, evident in the fourth-wall-breaking end credits sequence, serves more as a reminder of missed opportunities than a redeemer.

Ultimately, Anyone But You is an unchallenging film for those looking for a light romantic comedy. However, it lacks the depth, charm and genuine emotional resonance that distinguish the genre's most outstanding films. The use of Shakespearean inspiration feels more like a gimmick than a meaningful exploration of timeless themes, making this a forgettable addition to the romantic comedy canon.

Anyone but You
Directed by Will Gluck
Screenplay by Ilana Wolpert, Will Gluck
Story by Ilana Wolpert
Based on Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare
Produced by Will Gluck, Joe Roth, Jeff Kirschenbaum
Starring Sydney Sweeney, Glen Powell, Alexandra Shipp, GaTa, Hadley Robinson, Michelle Hurd, Dermot Mulroney, Darren Barnet, Bryan Brown, Rachel Griffiths
Cinematography : Danny Ruhlmann
Edited by Tia Nolan
Music by Este Haim, Chris Stracey
Production companies: Columbia Pictures, Roth/Kirschenbaum Films, SK Global, Fifty-Fifty Films, Olive Bridge Entertainment
Distributed by Sony Pictures Releasing
Release date : December 22, 2023 (United States), January 24, 2024 (France)
Running time : 103 minutes

Seen on January 25, 2024 at Gaumont Disney Village, Room 3 seat A19

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