Sunday, February 27, 2022

A Week in Paradise: Movie Review

Melodramatic romantic drama.
A Week in Paradise is a romantic drama that just leans so heavily into the melodrama of it all. How do movies in this genre still not understand that you can’t take yourself this seriously? The first half of the movie is a massive slog to get through. A cheating husband, a wife who is just so distraught she can’t possibly go to work, so okay, a week in Nevis will do.   2022

Directed by: Philippe Martinez

Screenplay by: Kate Wood

Starring: Malin Akerman, Philip Winchester

There are a lot of choices I just don’t understand. Why cast Malin Akerman if the character is British and then force her to do a really bad British accent which then gets dropped? Why does her character have to be British? Why can’t she just be American? And why do independent movies which have weak supporting casts insist their characters be movie stars? Actors who can’t act playing movie stars is just a pet peeve of mine. For the most part, the acting is really bad. Malin Akerman has her moments, but it’s just so heavy on the drama and the filmmakers never realized that she’s always been much better in comedy.

At least it’s shot on location in Nevis in the West Indies. However, the overly dramatic score, the maudlin dialogue and the very slow pacing dragging out the false emotion, really don’t help out the cinematography. Netflix’s recent exotic locale rom-coms like Australia’s This Little Love of Mine and Mauritius’ Resort to Love fare much better in showing off the ocean and scenery. The excessive slowness in detailing how sad Maggie is just drags the whole movie down.

The movie gets a little better when the romance storyline picks up. The one part of the casting that I like is Malin Akerman and Philip Winchester are both 40, and their characters look it. They get a steamy love scene even though most other movies wouldn’t allow it. The film’s target audience will appreciate the refreshing casting, and age-appropriate drama: Maggie’s soon-to-be-ex-husband never wanted kids but she did, and now her island romance hottie has a son of his own. Even though there’s way too much drama in the movie, that drama is at least relevant.

A Week in Paradise spends way too long delving into the woe-is-me and my cheating husband histrionics. It’s probably not an over-reaction on Maggie’s part, but it feels like it is with the mawkish dialogue and sickly score, and the whole “this island is beautiful and it’s going to heal you”, maybe don’t say that part out loud. The drama part of this romantic drama is bad. The romance part is acceptable, if you make it that far.