Monday, 25 January 2010

The Couples Retreat

The Couples Retreat – quasi review

This is not a film I would have gone to see but for the fact I am in Ghana and the other options were the Princess and the Frog, Alvin and The Chipmunks (the Squeakquel – Lord preserve us), Holmes (which I have seen) and Law abiding Citizen which just didn’t grab me.

Now it has come to my attention that things are edited for quite a conservative Ghanaian market. For instance we did not see Irene Adler (Rachel McAdams) swanning around in her Victoriana underwear in Holmes and I think maybe they edited out other stuff that slowed the pace of the story making last weeks film review kind of null and void if you live outside Ghana but I will press on just in case anyone reads these things and wants to know how the Ghana version rates.

The couples retreat:

Genre: US Style Romantic Comedy/ Romcom (ie not written by Richard Curtis)

Stars: Vince Vaughan; Jean Reno, Kristin Davis (the brunette from Sex in the City you know the one), Peter Serafinowicz (not technically a star but go on do the voice…you know the voice…go on do it the one from Spaced….Just do the voice Pete!!!)

Plot: Couples A C D are conned into going on a couples counselling week by couple B who have “issues”. They are on Island West run by Marcel (Reno); with overly polite bureaucratic anglophile Sctanley (Serafinowicz) as the kill joy programme manager. There is a singles inland East where nubile young things dance the night a way. Is there hope of reconciliation or is it going to be an Island hopping bed hopping romp (no pun intended).

Well I have to say I liked it, I can’t say I loved because I think it sits in the shade of films like Old Skool, which was funnier, more poignant, slightly more crass (in a good way) and was my first brush with Ellen Pompeo and Will Ferrell. I don’t mean I brushed Will Ferrell, or Ellen Pompeo for that matter but to that point I hadn’t seen either of them and now I rate them quite highly. This is not a film of American Pie style innuendo (at least not in Ghana) and it has laughs but more cerebral ones. It gently scrapes at the humour and pain of real marriages and not Hollywood ones. Would this appeal to anyone not married – I am not sure. Certainly marriage has been treated with a healthy respect by Messrs Vaughan et al. This could be a case of Vaughan growing with his audience, the wedding crashers of yesterday (you know who you are Cross!!!) are now the married family men of today.

Would I go to see it again? Yes outside of Ghana just to see if it is an entirely different film.

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