REVIEW: ‘Ticket to Paradise’ Thrives on Chemistry

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Ticket to Paradise - But Why Tho

It’s been a stellar year for romantic comedies. From The Lost City to Fire Island the range of romance, adventure, and comedy has had me excited. And with Ticket to Paradise, the trend continues only this time with film veterans George Clooney and Julia Roberts as David and Georgia Cotton, a former married couple whose daughter has decided to get married while on a trip to Bali.

Directed by Ol Parker and written by Parker and Daniel PipskiTicket to Paradise is romantic, gut-bustlingly funny, and a wonderful testament to Clooney and Roberts’ acting chemistry. In the romantic comedy, David and Georgia have been divorced for 5 years. While the two of them would prefer to never be in the same state let alone plane together, their daughter Lilly’s Law School graduation reunites the pair. But this pair didn’t always hate each other, in fact, their marriage began immediately after Georgia graduated college. What started as a passionate love affair soured and the two divorced, but their love for their daughter never faltered. When their daughter falls in love with a man named Gede () in Bali while on vacation after graduation the two get in lock-step to stop Lilly from making what they see as the same mistake they made.

There is no way around it, Ticket to Paradise is a really straightforward film. A mom and dad try to stop a marriage only to realize that they’re the real problem in the equation and not their daughter’s choice. Only here, it’s taking place in Bali and also uses a culture clash to push the story. While this latter part, and to be honest the 30-something day romance leave a lot to be desired, this movie isn’t about them. Or at least, I refuse to believe it was no matter how much time they dedicated to each other.

Instead, Ticket to Paradise succeeds because Clooney and Roberts are eclectic and hilarious together. They have a chemistry on-screen that feels like magic and ultimately overshadows every plot point that doesn’t belong to them in the field. While Lilly and Gede aren’t bad characters, their b-plot romance takes up too much time, too much explanation, and too much set-up. At every moment, I wanted to get back to David and Georgia. While chemistry is hard to nail when it comes to love, it’s even harder to nail when it comes to anger. These two are mean in the way you only can be when you really know someone when you really love someone. And that makes the humor perfection.

Ultimately, there is a cut of this movie where Lilly and Gede aren’t the major focus, but instead, a relationship happening in the background. But while that would have been fantastic, and I will never get over marrying someone in just a month, I can forgive those moments because of how effortlessly funny Ticket to Paradis is, and never really at the expense of Balinese culture. Outside of one instance during the wedding preparation, the film plays with David’s expectations and assumptions and makes him and those ignorant assumptions the butt of the joke.

Add in the fact that both Clooney and Roberts have moments to give genuine emotional performances while looking back on their love and former marriage, and Ticket to Paradise is wonderful. Even with its faults, this film is charming and loving. George Clooney and Julia Roberts together again, a beautiful setting and humor that works nearly perfectly, Ticket to Paradise are worth the price of admission.

Ticket to Paradise is playing in theaters nationwide.


Ticket to Paradise
  • 8/10
    Rating - 8/10
8/10

TL;DR

Add in the fact that both Clooney and Roberts have moments to give genuine emotional performances while looking back on their love and former marriage, and Ticket to Paradise is wonderful. Even with its faults, this film is charming and loving. George Clooney and Julia Roberts together again, a beautiful setting and humor that works nearly perfectly, Ticket to Paradise are worth the price of admission.

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