By ARIA SALESSI
Although Valentine’s Day has passed, a romantic comedy is a perfect film for any occasion, so this weekend, buy a big bucket of popcorn and settle down to watch Isn’t It Romantic. Starring Pitch Perfect’s Rebel Wilson, the film is a romantic comedy directed by Todd Strauss-Schulson and was released on February 13, 2019. Isn’t It Romantic has gotten positive approval from critics, with a 69% on Rotten Tomatoes. Unfortunately, its box office is quite low with a total of $33 million on a $30 million budget.
The film follows Natalie, an architect who delivers coffee as an assistant more than she actually creates buildings. Natalie’s life takes a strange turn when she gets knocked unconscious in a subway and wakes up in a parallel universe that is similar to a PG-13 romantic comedy. What makes the situation even worse is that Natalie discovers she is the star of the film, despite hating rom-coms. The reason I watched this film is that I knew that it was going to be very self-aware, which is something I thought would make the film much funnier than an average romantic comedy. Luckily, my prediction came true. Before Natalie was in a coma, she listed all the cliche things involved in romantic comedies. After Natalie wakes up from her unconscious state, all the cliche things she mentioned start coming true, including having a gay best friend and stopping a wedding to confess her true love for someone.
Many other events occurred throughout the film which paralleled romantic comedy tropes. An example of this is when Natalie starts walking around New York and discovers that it has magically become very clean and beautiful. Multiple times, she encounters someone she thinks is way out of her league who will call her beautiful. Their kind words would scare her, which I thought was hilarious. Another classic trope is when Natalie’s unattractive apartment becomes filled with fancy furniture and decorations. The film is so aware of itself and all of the cliches in a romantic comedy, which caused it to be really enjoyable and unique, unlike most films of the same genre which follow the same generic formula.
One of the most enjoyable parts of the film was Rebel Wilson’s acting. In my opinion, Wilson is hysterical in any role she gets put in. Throughout the film, she was able to make Natalie seem genuinely freaked out and confused about what was going on around her. She was the main source of laughter throughout the film and I could not see anyone else in the same role.
Another thing I liked about the film was how in the end, Natalie accepts that her life ended up like a romantic comedy film, like when she got together with the man she always liked. Her hatred towards rom-coms dissipated, which led to a satisfying ending.
Isn’t It Romantic plays with classic tropes to make a film that is completely different from any other film in its genre, while still managing to give out its message that there will be a time when everyone finds love.