Love Punch - Blu-ray Review

'a terrible film during which Brosnan could only make his displeasure more clear and obvious to the audience if he suddenly paused and delivered the titular whack to his own face'

Pierce Brosnan's post-Bond career can be broadly categorised into two buckets: films he is interested in and films he is not. Brosnan, like others before him, is not one to hide his displeasure at having to suffer the ignominy of starring in something that is both a) not Bond and b) not very good. A case study can be very neatly concocted here involving Love Is All You Need, a decent film Brosnan commits to and makes better and Love Punch, a terrible film during which Brosnan could only make his displeasure more clear and obvious to the audience if he suddenly paused and delivered the titular whack to his own face.

The primary problem, for what could have fairly easily have been an affable-enough Rom-Com, is tone, something writer/director Joel Hopkins creates for himself by writing in a caper-style heist to his Romance. Having lost the company pension to nefarious businessman Vincent (Laurent Lafitte), divorced Richard and Kate (Brosnan and Emma Thompson, the only person to emerge from this with any credit) head off to warmer climates to attempt to steal a diamond the evil one has gifted to partner Manon (Louise Bourgoin: Adèle Blanc-Sec herself!). Will things go smoothly from here?

The entirely predictable, shallow outcome is waylaid by curious moments of Hopkins apparently forgetting that he has pitched his mature film at a tasteful, mature audience. Somehow, this is a script that includes a moment of toiler humour, as Richard and Kate unconvincingly call their son for some tech advice and are greeted by his room-mate on the loo. Brosnan's face is a picture. If that moment doesn't convince then the tech advice part of the equation - surely a fairly easy staple to add to a script about the older generation - manages to sound even less convincing to even the most ardent of technophiles. 'I'm on the site but I'm being blocked', wails Thompson non-specifically, as product placement for a recognised provider of internet video calls dances on the already thin creative soul of the film.

Things take a spectacular turn for the less convincing and terrifically unfunny when Timothy Spall and Celia Imrie turn up to help with the heist, multiplying the non-heist savvy idiots on show by a factor of two for no real reason. In between such hilarity as watching all four compatriots in black wetsuits, Thompson has to go on Manon's hen do (for extremely ill-defined reasons), whilst sweet moments such as a quiet dinner and Thompson and Brosnan checking into their hotel ('separate rooms') are passed over and forgotten.

Instead of creating character out of the main four then, Hopkins bizarrely treats us to an extended look at the couple's daughter (Tuppence Middleton, who continues to be wasted in nearly everything she has appeared in since Skeletons), who is preparing to leave for University. At least that means she misses the show on offer at home. No such luck for the rest of us.





By Sam Turner. Sam is editor of Film Intel, and can usually be found behind a keyboard with a cup of tea. He likes entertaining films and dislikes the other kind. He's on , Twitter and several places even he doesn't yet know about.

No comments:

Post a comment