Falling Inn Love (2019)

Falling Inn Love
Director: Roger Kumble
Writer: Elizabeth Hackett, Hilary Galanoy
Cast: Christina Milian, Adam Demos, Jeffrey Bowyer-Chapman, Anna Jullienne, Claire Chitham, Blair Strang
Seen on: 18.10.2019

Gabriela (Christina Milian) is a designer from San Francisco, but her company goes under just as she and her boyfriend break up and Gabriela needs a fresh start. As she gets drunk to forget her sorrows for a while, she enters a competition to win an inn in New Zealand. To her surprise, she actually wins. And even more to her surprise, she actually decides to go, if only to renovate and sell it. But the inn is in worse shape than she thought. On the other hand, contractor Jake (Adam Demos) is much more charming than Gabriela could ever have guesse. Between renovations and culture shock, Gabriela has to figure out what to do next.

Watching Falling Inn Love, I got the distinct feeling that it was made by people who don’t care much for romance and just went through the motions. I honestly don’t know why I finished watching it.

The film poster showing Gabriela (Christina Milian) and Jake (Adam Demos) both with paint brushes in their hands, smiling at each other.

I am not saying that tropes are per se a bad thing. They became tropes, narrative conventions, clichés because they work, because they can give us the emotional response needed for the story. But in the case of Falling Inn Love, it literally felt like the people behind it took a superficial look at “what usually happens in RomComs” and treated this as a checklist for their film and what had to happen.

Now, I don’t know the people involved. Maybe they are huge romance fans in real life. But none of that translated to the screen for me. It felt like a lackluster, paint-by-numbers affair devoid of chemistry or actual romance.

Gabriela (Christina Milian) in a car, looking at something,

This made Falling Inn Love pretty much unbearable to me (despite New Zealand being pretty and Christina Milian leading the film as a woman of color). I have learned to deal with the heteronormativity that is so often inescapable when you want to watch a RomCom, but then I want to feel the passion and love between the characters at least.

When I say that I don’t know why I finished the film, I truly mean it. There was nothing there that really kept me engaged, so I’m guessing the reason is just “lethargy”. I probably should have used my time for another film instead.

Gabriela (Christina Milian) and Jake (Adam Demos) having a picknick on a beach.

Summarizing: skip it.

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