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STEPHEN'S MOVIE GUIDE

Down With Love  

Review: written 2003

You're a cynic if it does not raise a smile!

It's difficult to know whether to label this as a salute to, or a pastiche of, the 60's rom-coms of Doris Day and Rock Hudson. But whichever way you want to enjoy it, this has some inspired moments of comedy. And comedy of a sort that you can't find elsewhere in this decade!

Having said that, there are some jarring moments.. moments such as a telephone conversation in split screen which seems more inspired by Austin Powers than by Doris and Rock... That said, the pace and style of acting keep the audience with a smile on their face, albeit a more knowing one than audiences in the 60's had.

Although Ewan McGregor and Renee Zellweger just don’t seem up to the task of lifting performances from their predecessors, they still deserve plaudits for a noble attempt. The supporting cast on the other hand are spot on, particularly David Hyde-Pierce's turn as the boss - it may be a rerun of his Frasier character, but is all the better for it.

The backgrounds, the colours, the costumes, the rear projection techniques - all remind us that this is a comedy consciously marking out its territory as a 60's rom com, but the script and stars will keep you firmly in this decade as you watch it.

In summary, a bit of a mixed up recipe, but one which has risen to the occasion.





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