VOD film review: Almost Married
Ruby | On 11, Apr 2014
Director: Ben Cookson
Cast: Philip McGinley, Emily Atack, Mark Stobbart, Bill Fellows
Watch Almost Married online in the UK: TalkTalk TV / Apple TV (iTunes) / Prime Video (Buy/Rent) / Google Play
Some days you wonder, given the calibre of True Detective, the Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire, whether you are watching a film instead of a TV programme. Other days, the opposite occurs. Almost Married – out now on DVD and VOD – feels like a TV show disguised as a feature-length film. Much like The Inbetweeners Movie, but not half as enjoyable, a sketch thinner than tissue paper is stretched to breaking point, diluting anything you might have enjoyed in a half-hour slot on Channel 4 at 10pm.
Kyle (McGinley) contracts an STD after spending a weekend in Newcastle on his stag do, headed up by the unlikable and selfish Jarvis (Stobbart), who promptly takes his bezzy mate to the clinic to get him checked out. Lydia (Atack), meanwhile, finds it increasingly difficult to get her man in the mood. As she is in the dark about Kyle’s diseased genitals, she becomes despondent. That’s about as much as Ben Cookson’s plot thickens. Despite waiting for more, it never really gets out of first gear.
Kyle is a likeable but benign fellow, so easily led by his horror of a friend, that it almost makes us feel a modicum of sympathy for him. But finding his predicament funny might be asking too much: are we going to root for him or just hope he gets caught for playing away?
Both sets of parents get dragged into conversations that no one would ever have in front of them. Thankfully, Kyle’s down-to-earth mum and dad bring a little humour and light relief to the awkwardness, while Lydia’s parents are ‘posh’ and play strange parlour games, which not even The Good Life’s Margot and Jerry would know.
In keeping with the TV feel, most of the movie’s scenes are static and could have done with some movement; people talking in dining rooms, in bed, in the clinic waiting room, in the brothel, gets tedious after a while. Escapism into a subplot or two would give the story a little more pace, but Almost Married ultimately flags, coming to a halt once or twice before it makes it down the aisle.
Some days you wonder, given the calibre of True Detective, the Sopranos and Boardwalk Empire, whether you are watching a film instead of a TV programme. Almost Married is the opposite: a cross between Geordie Shore and Skins, but sadly not as entertaining, witty or dramatic as either of them.