CHICAGO – “Drinking Buddies” director Joe Swanberg’s latest release of the same star wattage is “Happy Christmas,” an even lower-fi story than the Olivia Wilde beer comedy, steered even more by the casting that it was able to assemble. However, with this movie Swanberg doesn’t so much worry about having a story that could be confused with a more mainstream romantic comedy if it were to have a bigger budget.
Film Review: More is Preferred in ‘Love is All You Need’
CHICAGO – Creating the lofty name for this film, “Love is All You Need” – from a translation of its original title, “Den skaldede friser” – is intently ambitious considering its source is a lyric from one of The Beatles most famous songs. The film has its moments, but cannot sustain itself in a stew of high drama and mixed emotions.
Pierce Brosnan lends his star power to a Danish, Swedish, Italian, French and German produced film, and actually is one of the main characters to get caught in the web of the conflicting emotions in the plot. He is supposed to be a man in mourning for a long passed first wife, but his sophistication as a wealthy business man and still-good-looking James Bond air makes this character trait extremely unlikely. However, he meets a woman who is struggling with her own problems, and it turns out they are both going to the wedding of his son and her daughter. Through a bunch of hard to fathom circumstances, the wedding becomes secondary to Brosnan’s pursuit in his definition of love. What this film really needs is a more coherent narrative flow.
Brosnan is Philip, who has lost his wife years ago in an automobile accident, and owns a food distributorship in Copenhagen. He has let his son Patrick (Sebastian Jensen) borrow the villa he owns in Italy for the son’s marriage to Astrid (Molly Blixt Egelind). Astrid’s mother Ida (Trine Dyrholm) is going to the wedding, but without her husband. He has flown the coop and now shacks up with an accountant from his job. This occurs right at the point while Ida is waiting for diagnostic news regarding her breast cancer, and right before the wedding.
Everyone gathers for the wedding, including Astrid’s father, who not only brings his new conquest but announces they’re engaged. Also arriving to stir trouble is Benedikte (Parprika Steen), the bawdy and obnoxious ex sister-in-law of Philip. Patrick and Astrid are ready to take the vows, but between their unrevealed secrets and Philip’s sudden attraction to Ida, they’ll need to first take care of the wedding guests.
Photo credit: Sony Pictures Classics