[email protected] Caen, while long as hell, has a certain charm, and comedic take on courtship, which will keep you from checking your watch.
|Screenplay By||Cory Brusseau, Martha Higareda|
|Good If You Like|
|Carla Valle||Elizabeth Guindi|
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Plot Summary/ Review
After a lot of disappointing dates, and a being left on her wedding day, Mia decides she has had enough. Her search for love has led to nothing but upping her body count and wasting her time. So instead of looking for love, she decides to manipulate men to get the kind of affection, and attention, she wants. Which leads to her thinking she has coined a surefire way for women to tame men and so when one major producer, Carla Valle, approaches her about producing a show, she jumps on it. The only thing is, she has to show the method works on a known Cassanova named Adan. Sounds easy right?
Well, maybe at first. For as Mia tries to play Adan, and him her, they are also trying to advise their friends, Toby and Margo, on how to manipulate the other person into who they want. Which both struggle with since they are the opposites of Mia and Adan. Thus leading you to watch as Toby and Margo stumble gleefully into love and Mia and Adan go tit for tat trying to avoid falling in love yet slowly slipping in.
Toby and Margo
While not the stars of the movie, Toby and Margo, multiple times, almost steal the spotlight from Mia and Adan. For it is this heavyset awkward dude and this girl who falls in love quickly and aggressively, who create the kind of romance you can swoon over. Making it so Adan and Mia sometimes are just two people you deal with until Margo and Toby are back on screen.
Breaking The Fourth Wall
When it comes to comedy, the best parts are when Mia and Adan think they have the other person where they want them, and speak to the audience directly. All in an attempt to educate us before their plan either fails or surprisingly goes as they say it would. Making for quite a few comical moments. Nothing huge mind you, you won’t end up laughing embarrassingly loud, but you’ll chuckle.
And if they don’t make you laugh, Adan’s father Daniel might.
The Time Length
While you won’t check your watch while watching this film, you may get antsy as it doesn’t necessarily do anything so good that constitutes two hours. In fact, one would submit there is a lot that could have been cut. For example, Sam and Rafa could have been cut. Also, while it was nice to see Adan and Mia’s work life, that could have been trimmed, maybe even Toby and Margo’s romance a bit.
Yet, unfortunately, trimming that would be a double-edged sword.
Rafa & Sam Don’t Add Much
One could say Toby and Margo represent the romantics, Rafa and Sam those who are very liberal about their sexuality, and then Mia and Adan operate in between. However, the issue with that idea is that Mia, Adan, Toby, and Margo get time and development for us to understand them and the different takes on love they represent. Sam and Rafa are just one-note characters who curve each other over and over. Add in Rafa isn’t a smooth player, and Sam is just barely featured at all, and it makes you wonder how much time could have been shaved by dropping these two.
On The Fence
While A Long Film, It Uses That Time Length To Flesh Out These Characters Well
As noted, the time length makes the film feel bloated. However, we will say that a lot of that time is used to develop these characters well. Be it noting Adan’s relationship with his father, and how he dealt with his mother leaving when he was 6, or going into Mia’s issues with love which started off with her ex-boyfriend Daniel. Add in Margo’s past being fleshed out, Toby telling us a breakdown of his family history, and what you get out of [email protected] Caen is what often it left on the cutting room floor. Especially when it comes to supporting characters.
Overall: Mixed (Divisive)
While, as a whole, [email protected] Caen is a good movie, the issue is that it is bloated. Now, one could say that is in a good way since most romances don’t flesh out the supporting characters as much as this film does. Yet, with no one really popping, in terms of depth or comedy, it makes you question if the extra character development ends up a double-edged sword. Hence the mixed label. [email protected] Caen is likable but overstays its welcome.
We learn the reason Carla Valle honed in on Adan to prove Mia’s method is because he two-timed her daughter. So she saw what Mia did to him, making him fall in love with her, only to learn he was being played, just deserts. Especially since it sent Adan into a downward spiral. However, Mia really did fall in love. Plus, with Esteban reminding her not only of the kind of men she used to deal with but what made her into a self-proclaimed b****, why would she go back to that?
So, after embarrassing herself on TV, she wins back Adan back and not too long after they kiss and makeup, Toby proposes to Margo. Oh, and Sam decides to give into Rafa’s advances and kiss him.
Is A Sequel Possible?
Yes. We have Toby and Margo’s wedding, seeing how Mia and Adan’s relationship progress, and there remains the question of what will happen with Rafa and Sam. Also, between Mia’s career as a producer of a new hit show, and Adan becoming a partner at the architectural firm he is in, there is the conversation of balancing love, work, family, and friends.