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|Index||148 reviews in total|
Having enjoyed Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau in Swingers, I thought that
this had a pretty decent chance of being a funny movie.
No dice. This film tries to be a zany comedy and a touching drama at the same time, and fails at both. It starts out well, but somewhere about 20 minutes in, seems to lose its way and it never comes back.
I have seen worse movies, and there are a few funny moments. But by halfway in, I was hoping it would end soon because it was just boring.
The best thing I can say is that this movie will have you wanting to visit Bora Bora because of all the beautiful scenery. Other than that.. meh.
I'm unsure what is more worrying, that Vince Vaughn and Jon Favreau
starred in such a mediocre comedy or the fact that they wrote it. Good
friends and regular collaborators Vaughn and Favreau have had mixed
results in their working partnership: Swingers is a bona-fide cult
classic which tore up the indie circuit back in 1996; Made was a
disappointment to all those expecting Swingers 2; The Break-Up was a
successful guilty pleasure and Four Holidays (Four Christmases in the
US) flopped massively at the US box-office. Where does Retreat fit in?
Somewhere near Four Holidays but at least they didn't also write
The target audience was obviously never decided upon as the humour seems to cater for everyone. One minute there are mature, real life moments that firmly fit into the "funny because it's true" category, the next there are gags revolving around untimely erections and masturbation that would be right at home in American Pie. Done in the right way and on their own either of these forms of comedy can be brilliant, however mixing them together makes for a muddled experience. There are a few hilarious scenes the yoga session undoubtedly the most memorable just nowhere near enough.
Of the cast Vaughn and Akerman come out best, their natural chemistry and adroit comic timing going a long way to keeping the movie afloat. The others don't fare so well. Favreau needs to leave the acting business and focus on writing and directing, it is practically impossible for him to be amusing on screen. Bateman, Bell, Davis and Love all fail to ever get us laughing, whilst the extended cameo from Jean Reno is possibly the worst stuff the experienced Frenchman has ever put on celluloid.
If you are looking for an easy comedy with fabulous locations (and women) then this might do the trick, but I definitely could not recommend spending your had earned cash to see this at the cinema. DVD bargain bins beckon.
2 out of 5 (1 - Rubbish, 2 - Ordinary, 3 - Good, 4 - Excellent, 5 - Classic)
What a wasted opportunity! They take 2 of our finest comedians, a
beautiful cast of hard working actresses, and a great tropical setting
and it comes out a stale, lifeless. laugh-free mess. Man, this was
painful to watch. Vince fired off a few smile inducing one liners in
the start-up domestic setting, and that was the last smile they got out
of me. Once the cast was moved to the tropics, everything went wrong.
Male on male embarrassment was overused -- about 5 times. Vince tried a
few off the wall diatribes that fell flat. Young women swoon over Jon
Favereau (huh?!?!) and he ignores the fabulous Kristen Davis?! The
pratfalls to marriage are glossed over and play out badly. Every scene
seems to last about 5 beats too long. Favereau gets not one, but two
masturbation scenes. What??! Neither comes even close to delivering any
humor. All 4 couples have shaky or totally damaged relationships and
then in a 10 minute whirlwind finale, all solve their problems in a
totally superficial way. And I couldn't possibly have cared less about
the "Guitar Hero" duel. Yikes!!
I guess I blame the writing for being witless, shallow and lazy. The actors take that material and lay an egg with it. And a 1st time director (the legendary "Ralphie" of "Christmas Story" fame) either couldn't see it or was over-matched by having the writers and producers in front of the camera.
A huge disappointment for me, and shocking that this dribble can gross over $100M at the box office. Any evening of bad TV sitcoms would be just as "enjoyable", and $9 cheaper.
I'm not sure what movie the other reviewers on here watched but it
wasn't the same movie i watched, this movie sucked pretty badly. I
could see the whole sarah marshal thing it was trying to replicate but
it fell short on every level, the writing was terrible, not at all
witty and none of the characters were believable although Vince was OK,
he was the exact same character he plays in every movie. The ending
felt as if they couldn't think of anything so they just ended it
I could go on, but i know they will just keep making these money makers and ill keep paying to see them...
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I just read a few reviews for "Couples Retreat" here on IMDb and I
agree with most of them. A few good laughs in an otherwise mediocre
script and a movie that isn't quite sure of its target audience. Rather
than repeat what has been said before, I'd like to use the opportunity
to talk about an issue that really bothered me. Towards the end, around
the time our main characters reach the fabled "Eden East", the jokes
recede and the dialog takes on a more serious note. The men start to
discuss each other's relationships, which is then followed by a number
of appropriate make-up scenes for each of the four couples.
Personally, I feel the dialog in that last fourth of the movie was so shallow it was almost appalling. Please don't get me wrong - I know romantic comedies don't usually enlighten us with deep insights into human love and emotions. But on the other hand I reserve the right not to be bullsh*tted. Have you ever had the feeling someone is trying to lecture you on something you have a far deeper and better understanding of? Picture a European soccer fan explaining baseball to you - you, a Yankees ticket holder all your life. Or maybe an accountant advising you, a hardy fisherman, on how to handle your net. You just want to go "yeah, right", then turn around and leave.
What am I driving at? Well, the point is, that is how I felt about the dialog. I'm not an expert on love, and chances are I never will be. But I know when something rings true and I know when something sounds like hollow garbage. "Once I saw other men, I learned what I have in you." Wow. "He is always planning everything out for us - our relationship feels like a prison." Deep. "If you don't make up with your wife, one day, you'll be sitting at Applebees all by yourself." Oh my, why haven't I thought about this before.
Where I live we have a saying: "If you don't have a clue about it - just shut up." During the last twenty minutes of this movie, I had the violent urge to grab Jon Favreau and Vince Vaughn and shake them until they stop selling me those trivialities like ancient wisdom. I sometimes wonder - is it just me? Do I have a weird perception of things? Maybe most viewers are actually severely touched by those scenes and I am just an insensitive rock? Honestly, I'd be interested to see a statistic.
Apart from that, I'm willing to admit there were some enjoyable moments. The boy's first toilet scene made me burst out with laughter. But by far the best thing about the movie was the setting - so beautiful and sunny it made me forget the winter for two hours. And that's worth something.
I watched this for free On Demand and still felt ripped off. Where do I start? The tone is so uneven that the scenes with the therapists are played straight despite the fact that two of them were played by John Michael Higgins and Ken Jeong, two guys who must struggle NOT to get laughs. It is almost as if they hired the actors and then decided to go a different direction -- if they even put that much thought into it. Before this debacle finally and mercifully staggers to an end it starts to feel as if they are literally making it up as they go along. There is no clear reason for this movie to even exist except as an excuse for the cast and crew to enjoy an nice tropical vacation, squeezing in a little movie work while they are there. Lazy, unprofessional filmmaking that is an insult to the audience.
Couples Retreat pits the comedic talents of Vince Vaughn and a capable
cast against one another. The storyline is as tired as old leather, but
there are just enough witty remarks to keep this trite comedy drifting
A group of friends decides to go to a heavenly tropical island resort named Eden, to repair their failing marriages. Eden is everything and more - with idyllic settings, sparkling waters and some of the most gorgeous staff.
But what goes on at Eden stays in Eden - because these couples have a lot of fixing up to do.
If you're interested in mindless action, little suspense and total predictability in a holiday-season caper - then Couples Retreat is your overdose of inane, draining comedy.
An idiotic script interpreted by illiterates.
Makes Adam Sandler look like the genius he thinks he is.
Couple's Retreat was bad in so many ways. The characters were not likable and they had no depth. The relationships were undeveloped and thus unbelievable. We were just supposed to accept them. The story was inane. The acting was unprofessional, but that may well have been because of horrid direction.
This thing fails miserably as a comedy, except for the few dramatic attempts, which were funny.
Might have been a good excuse for a bunch of people to go off to a tropical island and pretend to do work. Too bad they had audiences come out to look at the finished product, which should have never been finished, or started
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
I knew I was in for a treat when I got at least 2 pee and 5 ball sack
jokes in the first ten minutes of this trite excursion into dullsville.
Everyone here plays exactly what you would expect of them, basically
themselves in real life. This must have taken very little time to make
and seems to just be a paycheck for the actors. The plot is
ridiculously contrived, a couple is having troubles so to reassess
their lives they want to go to a beautiful retreat but can't afford it
even though they seem rich so they force their friends to go also on a
weeks notice. The club is said to be so hard to get into but for some
reason they offer half price for 4 couples, which makes a lot of sense.
Their only black friend who seems completely out of place here (and not
because he's black) has no money but who is buying a motorcycle
somehow, can also go with his 20 year old love tart whom everyone has
no problem with joining them even though she obviously only cares that
he buys her things but agrees to go through couples counseling even
though they just met.
Once on the island they are now informed they have to do what the retreat has planed for them and are again told there is a very long waiting list, but they again got a 1/2 price deal just for being them.
The next painful hour is spent creating one ridiculous scenario after another like when they all have to undress and all the other men are allowed to keep their underwear on except the guy with pants has to go naked in front of his friends wives.
This is one of the silliest pieces of junk to come along in a while.
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
Are we supposed to want these couples to get help? (which 75% of them
needed.) On second thought, I don't even want to go there.
The movie keeps jerking you here and there like you're a ball on an elastic. Jason (Jason Bateman) misleads the other couples by saying therapy is optional at the retreat because he can't afford the trip by himself. But it's mandatory. From what we know of the characters so far, most would want a refund since none are the soul-searching type. Whatever they paid, a refund seems the most likely solution. (They can sue later for the airline fares.) But instead the other couples give in with little protest which strained credibility for me. What then, is their motivation now? Joey (Favreau) just wants to get off; Shane (Faison Love) wants to pretend he's young and also avoid the pain of his divorce; Dave and Ronnie (Vaughn and Akerman) go along because they're good sports. and Jason (Bateman) wants to control his wife. Are there some laughs here? Can we laugh if we OVERLOOK the inconsistencies? I did but only a little. Stanley the yoga teacher made me laugh even though he was very non yogi-like. The therapists were funny because they were right at times and then too aggressive and revealing at others. That wasn't so funny.
And when they start "Operation Eden East" the movie dies a slow death. Favreau just wants to get off with strange stuff and this motivates the whole party to follow along. Even if they find Trudy (Hawk) it's unlikely she'll return with them. She's an adult. Eden East is a fake temptation that they all drift towards so the audience can buy into the rapprochements at the end. (Oh those lost and immature single people.) The utmost in unbelievability was the surprise entrance of Faison's ex-wife. Nothing in the story laid any grounds for that surprise. Wouldn't Faison have known if she were even slightly ambivalent about the divorce? Someone writing the ending wanted to sew up every couple relationship no matter how unlikely it might fit the story as told so far.
Joey's makeup with Shane was also totally unbelievable. There was no groundwork for it. They hadn't so much as smiled at each other throughout the whole movie. I was really enjoying Cynthia's new freedom from control freak Jason until she caved in and gave him another chance. She needed to test his promise to change for about six months first. Instead she bought the farm after five minutes.
Believable and fun was the makeup between Vaugh and Akerman. They realized that they'd always been OK. But I'd seen too much BS by then.
One more thing: when you bang a gong you need to remove the hammer or it will prevent the gong from vibrating. The way it was in the film (leaving the hammer against the brass) would have produced a big thud. Like the movie, in fact
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