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« Review: Dora and the Lost City of Gold | Main | A scattershot weekend at the box office. What did you see? »
Monday
Aug122019

"Four Weddings and..." this is a mistake

by Deborah Lipp

Last night I sat down to watch Hulu's new series, Four Weddings and a Funeral. First I looked in their “TV” section and couldn’t find it. Then I looked in their “Originals” section – it wasn’t there. Then I searched. “F” and “FO” did not bring it up. The only result for “FOU” was Found. I had to enter the R before the title appeared in my search results.

Folks, be warned: Even the network is hiding it...

Naturally, I had some trepidation about a TV show based on one of my all-time favorite movies, but the presence of Richard Curtis and Mindy Kaling was somewhat reassuring. I was prepared not to like it, but I was not prepared for how globally, fundamentally bad this show is. None of the characters are terribly likable. Kash, played by Nikesh Patel, is an exception; he has a sweet and sorrowful charm. But the big disappointment is Nathalie Emmanuel, who seemed ready for a breakout role after Game of Thrones. Unfortunately she’s a blank slate, with no comedic timing, and her character, Maya, is nothing but a series of stupid life choices. She’s a problem solver who solves no problems, and a communications director who fails to communicate.

Jokes fall flat, timing is off, characters are jerks, and the music is awful. Why am I watching? Oh, yeah, I promised Nathaniel a review. 

Nikesh Patel, left, is the MVP of the Hulu series

Oddly, this show is obsessed, not with the movie Four Weddings and a Funeral, but with Love, Actually, to which it nods as often as possible. I caught two references to the show’s namesake movie (including opening with a barrage of “fuck”s), but at least four or five to Love, Actually, including a stupid and insulting return to the white flashcard messages which have been parodied too often to take seriously (or comedically, I guess).

 

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Reader Comments (10)

Well that’s a bummer. Was hoping for a light-hearted diversion. Not enough of those lately.

August 12, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMikey67

With the original film, Richard Curtis made it look easy. Too bad the only thing they really stole from him was the title.
Curtis had the benefit of some great comic actors, timing, and a lot more heart. Comedy really is harder. this tv version merely confirms it.

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterLadyEdith

It's awful. Both somehow entirely too broad and undercooked at the same time. I was wondering if it were just a case of it needing to find it's footing after a shaky first episode, but its just poorly conceived and executed all around. Just a mess, but I've watched every episode so far, so the hate watching will commence!

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterVal

Deborah - agreed this was so bad yet Patel looks so good. He's worth watching it for one ep... otherwise risible.

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered Commentermurtada

Having watched every episode thus far, I can't disagree with a thing you've said, though I'll add that it's also cliché-ridden and predictable, and there's such a lack of chemistry among the core cast that it's hard to believe those characters ever would have become friends under any circumstances.

The most interesting aspect of the show is the carousel of recurring players, all more charming and fun than the duds at the center.

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTroy H.

4 Weddings is one of those films that MUST NEVER be remade. I just saw it again for the 5th time and STILL LOVED IT. And Hugh Grant should have been nominated instead of John Travolta. Seriously - how the HELL did Travolta get nominated for THAT performance!!!

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterBette Streep

Bette Streep: Really? I'd think cutting Paul Newman for Hugh Grant makes more sense than Travolta. Travolta: Second nomination. Newman: NINTH nomination, and he had both a competitive win and BOTH types of honoraries (regular and Jean Hersholdt) at this point. Nominating him past that point if it wasn't winner fodder was absolutely overkill. Hugh Grant and Dennis Quaid getting nominated instead of his ninth and tenth (obvious fifth slot) nominations, respectively, would have been great.

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterVolvagia

Ditch Hawthorne then Travolta before Newman. Don’t be a three artful with your excel charts of an actors career to triple check against their individual achievement in the years best awards.

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJoan Lange

Hear, hear. Getting hung up on the quantitative when it's the qualitative that matters is bananas. Nobody's Fool is actually one of Newman's *best* performances, so while I agree that Grant ought to have been nominated, it didn't need to be at Newman's (or Travolta's) expense when two slots are occupied by Hanks and Hawthorne.

1994 remains such an interesting year in cinema. Hardly weak, it houses many enduring films and actors doing excellent work. What a shame that the Academy was blinded, as it's won't to do, by genre-bias (action, comedy, horror/suspense, etc.).

August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterMareko

The movie is a classic romantic comedy

August 15, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterJaragon

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