Just Married (2003) – movie review

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Movie Review by Nigel A. Messenger

Starring: Ashton Kutcher, Brittany Murphy, Christian Kane, Veronica Cartwright, Taran Killam Director: Shawn Levy

Brittany Murphy certainly has been picking up some diverse roles recently. In JUST MARRIED she plays Sarah McNerney, a girl from a wealthy family, who against her family’s wishes marries a not so wealthy Tom Leezak (Ashton Kutcher), and then goes off on honeymoon to Europe, where things don’t go quite according to plan.

I won’t go any deeper into the storyline as it really is quite basic. However JUST MARRIED does feature some picturesque European locations and tries, and occasionally succeeds, in making us laugh. It just doesn’t succeed enough and it relies on old, done before jokes from other movies to achieve its humour.

There are also a number of wasted attempts where potentially funny situations just fall flat, mainly because the director does not make the most of the moments and the humour is further diluted by Brittany Murphy’s character laughing at the humour of the events rather than playing it straight and being amazed at yet another thing going wrong on her honeymoon. In fact one of the funniest bits involves a girl Wendy (Valeria) that Tom accidentally picks up in a bar and ends up with in his hotel room. Unfortunately it’s Valeria’s only appearance so there’s nothing else to laugh at with her character.

The film also features actor David Rasche as Sarah’s father. Now if you remember him from the TV show SLEDGE HAMMER you’ll know he’s capable of making almost anyone crease up with laughter and yet here his character is totally underused – a complete waste of an excellent comic talent.

The real problem with JUST MARRIED is that it’s really a little romantic comedy that’s desperately trying to cash in on Farrelly brothers’ type humour and it just can’t copy that outrageous style successfully even though it rips off at least one key scene – dog jumping out of a window while playing with a ball – shamelessly and with almost no comic element!

It has to be said though that even with all the critical comments I’ve made I was still entertained to some degree by JUST MARRIED and that’s why I’ve given it a three out of six rating. May be the film was just light enough to entertain or may be it just wasn’t irritating enough to piss me off!

3 out of 6 stars