Newest Review: ... about herself in order to get closer to him, unbeknown to the fact that Jane has been forever secretly in love with George. Their quick lov... more
Doormat or angel?
27 Dresses (DVD)
Member Name: sunmeilan
27 Dresses (DVD)
Advantages: Entertaining enough
Disadvantages: Contrived, bit soppy, generally not brilliant
Jane finds out at a young age that she is good at looking after other people. Her mother died while she and sister Tess were still young and Jane more or less brought Tess up. As an adult, she has successfully been bridesmaid at 27 weddings, but although in love with her boss, George, she hasn't managed to be a bride herself. Then sister Tess arrives to stay with her for a few days, meets and falls in love with George, and breaks Jane's heart. While organising George and Tess' wedding, Jane is pursued by Kevin, a journalist who professes to want to become involved with her. But is he, or is he just using Jane for a story? Will Jane win George back? Will she ever find happiness?
27 Dresses is very much a romantic comedy, a genre that I'm not particularly fond of. Nevertheless, I do like Katherine Heigl as an actress and so didn't mind watching the film as much as I thought I might. As Jane, Heigl is good - she comes across as being humble, intelligent, a bit of a doormat, but generally very likeable - perfect for the lead character. It isn't a stunning role, by any stretch of the imagination, but for the purposes of the story, she was more than adequate. Her sister Tess, played by Malin Akerman, was the complete opposite - selfish, go-getting and thoroughly annoying. This was obviously exactly how she was supposed to do, but Akerman did overdo things at times.
The men were rather more nondescript. James Marsden played Kevin and thankfully did grow on me during the course of the film, because to begin with, he left me fairly cold. I'm not familiar with him as an actor, which is perhaps one reason he didn't leave me with much of an impression, but his role was also unrealistic and more than a bit daft in the first third of the film. He does improve though, although I never really felt any chemisty between Kevin and Jane. Edward Burns plays George. Another actor I haven't come across before, I felt he was rather dull - although undoubtedly that is partly down to the way that the character was written.
I tend to be a bit of a cynic when it comes to weddings. I think that the wedding industry is overrated and the amount of money that people spend on what is really just one day of a life is scary. I was therefore concerned that the film would annoy me, presuming that it was going to be very much on the side of big weddings and extortionate costs. Actually, it isn't - one of the things Kevin wants to write about is exactly that and how it is not always necessary to spend a fortune to have a wonderful day. This made the film a lot more palatable for me, and yet was also enjoyable for my sister who wanted, and had, a big wedding.
The story itself was incredibly contrived at times and felt a little forced - the coincidences of Kevin constantly managing to track Jane down and Tess falling in love with George, Jane's boss and secret love, were a bit much to bear. Then again, it is a rom com and isn't meant to be taken too seriously. At nearly two hours, I could have done with it being around 20 minutes shorter - parts of it felt laborious around half way through, but thankfully, it did start to pick up again to stop me switching off from it completely. There isn't much about the story that is either fresh or original, but there is a certain charm that make it entertaining enough.
As a rom com, there was plenty of humour in the film. Jane, despite her beauty and ability to organise huge events, is a bit of a klutz, often putting herself in embarrassing positions. The script wasn't particularly funny though - it was definitely the action that kept things moving along in this area. The humour does allow for some particularly silly moments though - at one point, Jane follows Kevin onto a boat and hijacks someone else's wedding - not really something you can really imagine anyone doing. She also shows her sister up appallingly at a pre-wedding dinner, which just serves to bring her down to Tess' level. There are plenty of other moments that could be pulled to shreds as well.
There are a number of extras with the DVD. Firstly, there are some deleted scenes - as invariably happens, they were deleted for a reason and didn't really add anything to the film. Then there are four featurettes about various aspects of the film and wedding dresses. These didn't really interest me at all, so I just skipped through, but those with a more romantic nature will probably enjoy them. The behind the scenes extra, called 'The Wedding Party' is probably the most interesting.
Ultimately, this is a reasonable film that will please most lovers of rom coms who want the story to be romantic and funny and don't really care that it is full of stereotypes and predictable storylines. Katherine Heigl and James Marsden are very easy on the eye and there is plenty of colour in the weddings and clothes that Jane attends and wears. If you're looking for something easy and light-hearted to watch and you have more romantic bones in your body than I do, then you'll probably enjoy this, although it's definitely more for the girls than the boys. Three stars out of five.
The DVD is available from play.com for £2.99.
Running time: 111 minutes
Summary: Not bad for a rom com