Published on May 9th, 2012 | by Charlie Truong1
Review: The Five-Year Engagement (2 Stars)
Less is more. That’s what was lacking in this movie. If they could have shaved off 30 minutes of this movie, I think this would have been significantly better.
The Five-Year Engagement stars Jason Segel as Tom Solomon, who proposes to his girlfriend Violet Barnes, played by Emily Blunt. Tom is an aspiring chef, and Violet aims to do academic research in her field of social psychology. Unfortunately, Violet has difficulties in achieving her dream in California, so Tom agrees to put his career on hold while they move to Michigan for her to complete her studies. Tom spirals into depression as his wife enjoys her success and he struggles to be the stay at home husband.
The earlier Judd Apatow movies often were known for having good stories in addition to solid comedy. This film, on the other hand, seems more like a series of comedic skits stitched together with a small semblance of a cohesive story. The scenes just do not seem organic as they move from one bit to another. This is even more evident as each scene seems overly long. Again, editing would have been key here.
From the start, the movie does itself no favors when the opening scene completely drags. Tom’s elaborate plans to propose to Violet go awry, and the most it elicited from me was a pity chortle.
Another weakness in this film is the lack of a likable main character. I could not find myself rooting for either character since both were self-centered idiots. Tom, especially in his later stages of depression, becomes rather annoying.
This creative team has had a good track record excepting some of the recent films. May they find their voice again with their next project.