Welcome! As we close Valentine’s Day Month, I wanted to talk about romantic comedies…again. I have talked about romantic comedies a lot in the past. What I have never talked about are the romantic comedies that are completely underrated. Some were only in a few theaters or only made it to Netflix. Either way, I love to put these movies in when I need to see something light and fun. Nothing truly serious here.
So, without further ado, here are my top three underrated romantic comedies.
The Matchmaker (1997)
This film starring Janeane Garofalo, David O’Hara, Milo O’Shea and Dennis Leary (this cast is full of ‘hey I know that guy’ people) is one of my top favorite romantic comedies. Sadly, whenever I mention it to people, they have no clue what I am talking about at all. I first saw this film when the WE channel had the Cinema Therapy show. I became addicted and when I got older I got my hands on a DVD.
The plot is as follows. Marcy, who works for Senator McGlory in Boston, has to go to Ballinagra, Ireland to find his ancestors. She gets there and finds herself in the middle of a matchmaking festival. Let us just say while trying to do her job she keeps getting caught up with two rival matchmakers and a bartender named Sean. I am not going to ruin the ending but it is sweet and so incredibly funny at the same time.
What makes this movie great? The characters, the plot and the setting for one. Ok…for all. This film uses Ireland and its residents to set a very charming tone. Not only do you love the main characters (Marcy and Sean) but you love all the townspeople. It has all these dynamics going on that work so well. The matchmakers (Dermont and Millie) are hilarious has they try to match Marcy. It is one of those movies where you wish they made more because you didn’t want to leave this small Irish town or its people. That is what is great. No character you come across is useless. They are all different and add a lot to the plot of the film. Every character has chemistry. Especially the leads.
Speaking of the plot, it’s not entirely focused on romance. It has a mystery (where and who are the ancestors of Senator McGlory?) and makes the lead finally stand up her herself and what she wants.
I believe you can find the film on YouTube, but it is available on DVD as well. Seriously, a great watch that is small, sweet and utterly charming. You will be quoting certain lines long after the film is over.
The Decoy Bride (2011)
The Decoy Bride is a movie I found on Netflix. I let it sit on my list for a while until I found out it was written by Sally Phillips, a comedian I really enjoy. So, I took a deep breath and hit play. This movie stars David Tennant, Alice Eve and Kelly Macdonald and follows a famous trope.
An actress named Lara Tyler keeps trying to marry her fiancé James Arber but the paparazzi keeps ruining the wedding. So, they have a plan to marry at the place her fiancé wrote about in his book, Hegg. Too bad he faked the whole thing. While her staff try to fix up a place for them to marry there, Lara goes missing. To make sure the wedding goes as planned her team hire a local girl Katie to fill in without James knowing. Chaos ensues.
I left a ton out of the summary but it follows the fake/stand in fiancés falling in love trope. This film is light and funny. The main selling point is the chemistry between the lead characters, James and Katie. Once they go off on their journey the film picks up. You cannot help but want them to be happy so you are on their side even when things get weird. What the film also gets right is not demonizing the other woman, Lara. She is sweet but lost in the romance of this whole situation. She is fighting a different fight too. The paparazzi. I won’t ruin her end but it is kind of cute.
I read on IMBD that the filming budget was small so a good amount had to be cut out. Which explains why certain things happen in the film without explanation. I would love to get my hands on the full script to read what I missed.
With or without the full script this film is worth a watch. The leads are charming, and the film didn’t degrade the other woman.
One Small Hitch (2012)
This movie was another one that sat on my Netflix list. I was sick one day and decided to give it a watch. What I got was a formulaic film, but it had a lot of heart.
It stars Shane McRae as Josh and Aubrey Dollar as Molly. They are two friends who are faking an engagement to please their families. They come up against many obstacles like religion, ex-girlfriends, siblings and their issues but ultimately find they are in love.
Yes, this is as formulaic as it gets. The trope of the fake engagement has been done to death. Does not mean it is not enjoyable to watch. What makes this movie shine is the acting of the leads. They flirt through a tired premise with ease. The chemistry is off the charts and makes you want to root for them. Their families are not bad either. They help the leads find their way to each other in funny ways. This movie also has an ex-girlfriend that is not made to be a bitch (to put it lately). She is the one who help Josh and Molly get their act together at the end of the film. The leads are on fire and the supporting characters are fun. Yes, the premise is tired but it is a fun movie for a rainy Sunday.
These three films are a lot of fun and are worth the watch for any romantic comedy fan. They may not have the fan base but they deserve to have more than me as a fan! I also need more people to talk to about my love for The Matchmaker. Please, I need to bounce theories off people. So, get to watching!
Until next time, the randomness has ended. I hope you have enjoyed.