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‘Funny Thing About Love’ review: Tis the season for unrelatable holiday rom-coms

Well, it is about love.

Funny Thing About Love is as ready for the holiday movie season as any romantic-comedy on the Hallmark channel. Samantha Banks (Summer Bellessa) is a successful businesswoman who is happily engaged. When she invites Bryce (Jason Gray) to meet her family over Thanksgiving, she is shocked to see they have invited her ex-boyfriend Luke (Kevan Moezzi) in an attempt to reunite them.

This film is all about mindless holiday fun. The meddling family dynamic has been used in film and television successfully for decades. The question is not whether Funny Thing About Love will be funny. The premise offers enough fertile ground so that even the most well trodden territory will elicit some chuckles. It is more about whether it will garner genuine laughs or just knee jerk reactions.

In order for this type of movie to win a crowd over, it needs to have strong characters. Rom-coms – especially ones set during the holidays – are all about being relatable. That is where the film mishandles things. There is nothing wrong with a movie filled with glamour and high pressure lives. There is even a charm in seeing how the richer half lives. Going that route is tricky, however.

But if a story is going to showcase larger than life situations, it needs to have characters that are just as flamboyant. If not, the story comes off as trite and insulting. Funny Thing About Love touches on Samantha’s life, but it seems more like someone’s idea of what being rich and successful is like as opposed to actually living that life. It is similar to friends in high school talking about how awesome it will be to get an apartment together. 

What results is a gathering where the lead character bemoans whether she should sell her company for over a million dollars while one of the members of the love triangle is conflicted over whether to star in his own television show. So much for being relatable. (The lily white cast does not help matters.)

'Funny Thing About Love' review: Tis the season for unrelatable holiday rom-coms

Once Funny Thing About Love places its characters on a different plane, the movie becomes inaccessible. It is not any less funny or heartwarming, it just becomes a chore to watch. It is fine holiday entertainment for those who have not interest in the characters.

Funny Thing About Love is available in theaters to rent or purchase through digital and on demand

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