What if we got rid of this genre altogether, would there be many complaints? Well yes there probably would be but certainly not from me. I am still waiting for the romantic drama that is able to interest me and actually draw me into the film. What If looked to be a more credible effort from its promotion but was it able to intrigue me?
In short no it didn’t, however it is a notably better romance movie than most I have seen. In only Daniel Radcliffe’s third film since Harry Potter we see his character Wallace pining over his new friend Chantry (Zoe Kazan). This is basically the extent of the plot, it builds up to a predictable ending and offers nothing new. The film begins well steering clear of too much sop and featuring a really funny slapstick moment. After this I began to hope that What If was maybe going to be different although this hope didn’t last long as after this point I didn’t laugh again once. Wallace and Chantry weren’t particularly likeable characters but they weren’t dis-likable either, this just resulted in me not caring that much about their fate. Ben, Chantry’s boyfriend wasn’t as much of an ass I was expecting him to be, this didn’t help my not caring about Wallace and Chantry. None of the characters did anything that called for changes and I wouldn’t have cared if nothing did.
The secondary characters, Allan and Nicole were much more likeable and interesting, their inclusion only reinforced how inoffensive the main characters were ultimately detracting from the films overall plot. However saying that they most certainly enhanced the film as you went through it, scenes involving them always increased my intrigue and were able to hold my interest more so that any involving Wallace and Chantry. As is often the case with this genre of movie, the soundtrack is good but I am kind of getting sick of only being able to appreciate soundtracks. I understand that this genre just isn’t for me but I’m sure someone will get it right one of these days. The performances are good enough and there really isn’t that much sop, thankfully at the end of the film we are spared from seeing Wallace and Chantry working out how the long distance element will work. If What If had of crafted more interesting leads and featured more comedy, that there were elements off, it could have been really great however instead it just eases back into the generic romance drama formula despite starting well.
BIGGEST FLAW – Uninteresting main characters
BIGGEST ACHIEVEMENT – Good start
Rating – 6/10