‘Wedding Ringer’ Review (First Hour): Dreadfully, Frantically Unfunny


Full Disclosure: I walked out after an hour. It was 11:30 at night, my alarm is set for 6 in the morning, and I had had enough. The premise is dumb, the movie dumber. Non-stop frantic comic montages set to pop songs interrupted by shallow bromancing and achingly awful exposition might somehow meet the definition of a comedy film, just not a good one.

Kevin Hart plays Jimmy, the Wedding Ringer in question, who, for a price, will pose as your best man. His customers are double-shot losers who not only have no friends, they also begin a life together by lying to their betrothed about that fact. The loser in this case is Doug (Josh Gad), who is a mere ten days from his wedding and not only short a best man, but a half-dozen groomsmen.

If, for the sake of the movie, you want to believe this situation arises often enough to keep a local business going, we’re then asked to believe that Jimmy has never faced this kind of situation before. “Six groomsmen in 10 days! That’s what we call a ‘Golden Tux,’ and it’s never happened before!”

That’s about as good as the dialogue gets.

We’re also supposed to believe the planning and training to pull off something this simple requires fake names, fake identification papers, fake biographies, and intense military-style precision and planning.

Not for a second did I buy this. And I certainly didn’t buy into the idea that big stakes were involved. Anyone over the age of 5 knows it’s not difficult to pass someone you’ve known for a week off as a friend. Forced. Contrived. Ugh.

The bromance between Jimmy and Doug is shallow, programmed, and so obvious as to where it’s headed my insulted intelligence asked to leave the theatre after only a half hour. You see, Jimmy refuses to become a real friend to any of his clients… Gee, ya’ think, he and Doug will end up BFFs?

If the two actors had some chemistry, this might have still worked. There is nothing in all the forced charm and pathos, though, that makes you want to see them end up friends.

The execution is like a trip to the dentist. Painfully unfunny montage after painfully unfunny montage after painfully unfunny montage: Jimmy and Doug dance! The Ringers train! The bachelor party! The contrived car chase! The touch football game! Why is Joe Namath in this movie! Sexually abusing a dog is not funny! Mimi Rogers deserves better!

I will say this, Nicky Whelan is not unpleasant to look at.

Again, this is only a review of the first hour. The last 45 minutes might be AWESOME. Feel free to take the risk and report back below.


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