• 84°

THE MOVIE GUY — Unbelievable but charming rom com

I’ve always been a fan of romantic comedies, even though I know that it’s not the most critically acclaimed movie genre.

Sometimes I’m happy to simply turn off my brain and allow myself to be swept away by a good-hearted romance. If the movie also has a few laughs, then so much the better.

The latest rom com to hit movie theaters (yes, that’s right, it’s in theaters) is “The Broken Hearts Gallery.” This is one of those films that is filled with unbelievable details, but it succeeds thanks to the whimsical charm of Geraldine Viswanathan, who plays Lucy, the down-on-her-luck heroine at the center of the movie.

It turns out that Lucy is having a bad day.

Not only did she breakup with her boyfriend, Max (Utkarsh Ambudkar) but she was also fired from her job at a hipster-cool art gallery.

Don’t worry, Things are about to get better. Lucy gets a meet cute with Nick (Dacre Montgomery) and the film quickly turns into a predictable romance with Lucy trying to decide between nice guy Nick and her feelings for her Ex.

Helping to process her feelings, Lucy opens an art gallery that displays mementos from romances that have fizzled. It’s a cute idea that gives the film some engaging new ideas to explore.

Some new ideas, but the film is mostly traveling a well-trodden path. The romance is very predictable, and the characters are frequently of the one-note variety, existing only to fulfill a function of the screenplay.

The exception to this rule is Viswanathan, who is charming in this performance.

She’s a vulnerable mess, but still whimsical and engaging. It’s easy to fall in love with a heroine like Lucy — which is probably the most important key to the success of “Broken Hearts Gallery.”

Another important factor is the writing, and first-time director Natalie Krinsky has a nice ear for dialogue.

I may have an issue with the overall structure of her screenplay, but it’s still a lot of fun just listening to her characters talking to each other.

Okay, I also take issue with some of the film’s incredible details. How can Lucy afford the rent on her apartment? Is Nick really planning on renovating an entire hotel all by himself? These are pretty unbelievable elements that can take you out of the movie if you allow them to seep into your brain.

I’m happy to report that I was mostly-able to block them all out, focusing instead on the feel-good love story, the occasional humor and the charm of the central character.

“The Broken Hearts Gallery” isn’t a great rom com, but it has just enough charm to delight fans of the genre. Including a cranky old film critic like me.

“The Broken Hearts Gallery” opens in theaters today (Sept. 11).

 

Movie reviews by Sean McBride, “The Movie Guy,” are published each by Port Arthur Newsmedia and seen weekly on KFDM and Fox4. Sean welcomes your comments via email at smcbride@sbgtv.com.