Almost Married Review

Almost Married is a romantic comedy that is neither romantic nor particularly funny, but I suppose some might suggest a film dealing with a “serious” STD shouldn’t be. The victim of said venereal disease is everyman Kyle, played by a rather likeable Philip McGinley, who discovers his ailment following his bachelor party orchestrated by best man Jarvis. Jarvis, played by Mark Stobbart, is the films comic relief, a phrase which here means the character who says the most obscene things and is generally a bit of an arsehole. Jarvis and Kyle work together as they try to keep Kyle’s bethrothed from having sex with him in the run-up to the wedding. This is tricky in Almost Married as all of its female characters seem to be completely and utterly obsessed with sex, none more so than Emily Atack’s Lydia, fiancée extraordinaire.

The script itself feels like the first draft of an average romantic comedy. The jokes are increasingly predictable, as are the films various twists and turns. At times I wished I could be watching back in the comfort of my own home, purely so I could scream at the TV as the characters made ridiculous decision after ridiculous decision. It felt like I had seen the film before, as if some sort of film-making paint-by-numbers.Take one likeable man, one less-likeable but chauvinistic and therefore funny (?) man, one attractive woman who is capable of being on a movie poster but not really being in the film that much, two sets of parents who are hilariously parents, add a happy ending and you’ve got a hit right? Worked for Gavin and Stacey on the Beeb, so why not for Ben Cookson feature debut?

It might be that the film not only lacked a happy ending, but has you leaving the picture literally seething. Cookson M. Nights the film and needlessly tacks on a twist. It’s almost as though Cookson has it in for Kyle and the entire film is just twisting the knife again and again. The final twist of the blade would be ok, if the film were not to end immediately after. We see no resolve for Kyle, no retribution, it just ends. Endings like this are always decisive, and can often leave a sour taste in your mouth but normally they are more suited to there films. In Almost Married it just further proves that this movie is experiencing a deep identity crisis. Am I a comedy? A drama? A romance? I understand that Cookson would probably argue that “life goes on” and “all endings aren’t actually endings” (not actual quotes from him or anyone), and whilst this is mostly true, in a film which sets up specific time parameters, like Almost Married (The film follows the 90 days he must go without sex as directed by his doctor), the audience are expected a resolve after the 90 days, and the film doesn’t even make it that far. It’s an awful decision as audience members are always going to be left feeling unfulfilled and underwhelmed.

Unfortunately for Almost Married, the ending is literally the last of its problems. What proceeds it is at times almost painful to watch, but it isn’t always terrible. McGinley remains likeable throughout and at certain points I could be found chuckling along to something gross that Jarvis had said, or maybe one of the parents having said something a person might say, but that was sadly it. Stobbart was average, and Atack felt more wooden than her Inbetweeners days.If you enjoy comedies that are vulgar purely for the sake of being vulgar, and you feel that closure is overrated, then Almost Married might be for you. If not, steer clear.

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6 Responses

  1. Brooke

    i dont understand the ending at all. what did she say and why did he leave?

  2. Love

    Jarvis slept with Lydia. How Kyle got to know? The “I swear” phrase that Lydia uttered was the exact one that Kyle to Lydia when she asked if he was cheating on her. It was Jarvis that coined the phrase. That was why Kyle was heading to the door when he realized this.

  3. jhat

    Thanks Love for the explanation, I couldn’t figure it out,

    It is the scene where the two are smoking a joint; in some sort of hut; camping seems to be implied – scene begins at 40:14 into the film, depending on your method of obtaining it it may be around this time, During the conversation, they are practicing how to deny any infidelity when Lydia ultimately asks Kyle. Jarvis continues to coach Kyle with a scripted response, and this exact same response is what Lydia says in the end,

  4. Lindo

    his friend is the one who slept with her. that why Jarvis tried to stop kyle from confronting Lydia. after kyle realized it he was going to fight his friend. i think that how the movie should have ended. no one wanted to see them fighting after what they’ve been through as friends

  5. Matt

    Yes Jarvis actually slept with lydia.
    #Moral of the story is that people most times don’t just do good to you because they wanna, its probably because they felt guilt after wronging you. There’s a price for everything ,even kindness. nevertheless I never wished their cool envious friendship would end like that..I mean y’all remember when kyle was gonna commit suicide and all that. Interesting movie I’d say

  6. Max

    and if you notice Jarvis was calling someone as Kyle was making his way to Lydia’s parents house. And Lydia took a while to come downstairs she responded, ‘I am on the phone’. My guess is she was talking to Jarvis.


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