Rom-coms are for escapism not life lessons.
So self-titled guide on How To Be Single starts with some questionable advice for getting over a break up.
Alice (Dakota Johnson) wants to pause her perfect Meet Cute college romance so she can start adult life in New York City as an independent, single woman. Enter new friend Robin, a peroxide blonde, shot-downing, sequin-covered embodiment of exuberance, played with gusto and comic flair by Rebel Wilson.
A whirlwind of partying and hangovers ensues. It’s pure fizzy fun to watch, but nothing we haven’t seen before. Surely after some highs and lows, with the help of a gal pal, Alice will find her feet, realise she’s lost the love of her life, win him back and, hey presto, happily ever after.
But How To Be Single is smarter than that. This is a fresher, feminist take on the rom-com for Generation Y. Yes, there’s clichés; the husband-hungry ‘psycho’ creating computer algorithms to find The One, the perennial player barman shunning commitment, the career woman getting broody. But these familiar conventions play out with a sharp twist of self-awareness and a few pleasing surprises.
The story transcends ‘girl meets boy’ to create a vibrant, tender portrait of sisterhood, friendship and self-identity. And much like Bridesmaids it makes comedy from a combination of droll accuracy and downright silliness. The result is not polite titters kind of funny, but big belly laughs that echo through the cinema.
How To Be Single doesn’t take itself too seriously and it’s frothy enough to make even the dullest day sparkle. But best of all, it has the warm fuzzy escapism of the rom-com formula without patronising modern women (or indeed men). We left the cinema feeling thoroughly entertained, somewhat emotional and, cheesy as it may sound, a little more empowered.
|How To Be Single film review
|Various Locations | MAP
|Leicester Square (underground)
19 Feb 16 – 31 Mar 16, Screen Times May Vary
|£determined by cinema
|Click here to go to the film's IMDB page