Movie Review: “They Came Together” Is A Funny Parody On New York Romantic Comedies

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Review by James McDonald

When Joel and Molly meet, it’s hate at first sight: his big Corporate Candy Company threatens to shut down her quirky indie shop plus, Joel is hung up on his sexy ex but amazingly, they fall in love.

I like Paul Rudd. In fact, I think he’s a very likable guy and therein lies the problem. Nearly every time I watch him in a movie, he’s always playing Paul Rudd. Just like Ron Livingston from “Office Space”, they both seem to play themselves in every movie they make but I have to give it to Mr. Rudd this time around, he over accentuates himself in “They Came Together” but then again, so does the entire cast. I honestly thought that the movie was going to be another romantic comedy set in New York comparable to the likes of “Serendipity”, “You’ve Got Mail” and “When Harry Met Sally” but that’s exactly what the filmmakers are hoping you’ll do.

“They Came Together” is a parody of every New York-themed romantic comedy you can think of and it is hilarious. Mr. Rudd plays Joel, an executive who works at a large Corporate Candy Company who is threatening to shut down every small and independently owned candy store in the city, including that of Molly’s (Amy Poehler) store, Upper Sweet Side. Naturally, when Joel and Molly first meet, they do not get along but a second chance meeting at a bookstore changes their initial thoughts about each other and they agree to go out for a cup of coffee together. Joel has just broken up with his ex, Tiffany (Cobie Smulders) because she was cheating on him with one of his office co-workers and Molly has a young son whose father is no longer in the picture.

Molly’s candy store gives ALL of its proceeds to charity and Joel wants to someday own his own coffee shop, which he will name ‘Cup of Joel’. Through their ups and downs, they never give up on their dreams, even when Molly’s accountant astonishingly wonders how the hell she’s still in business making absolutely no profit whatsoever. The movie uses every single cliché in the New York-themed romantic comedy handbook and leaves nothing out.

We meet Molly’s overprotective sister who doesn’t like Joel but gradually warms up to him; Molly’s young son Tucker who loves Pokémon and gosh darn it, Joel just happens to know everything there is about Pikachu, Chikorita and Celebi; when Joel and Molly begin to get serious about each other and their relationship, we see the two, happily together, through a series of antiquated montages, walking arm in arm eating ice-cream, rolling around in the leaves together in the park and in one of the film’s funniest moments, they are kissing passionately and embraced in each other’s arms and happen to knock every bookcase, vase and breakable object over.

The movie, from beginning to end, is one big caricature and both Mr. Rudd and Ms. Poehler work perfectly off of each other, with impeccable comic timing. The supporting cast consists of some hilarious turns from the likes of Adam Scott, Bill Hader, Jason Mantzoukas, Ed Helms, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Christopher Meloni, who makes fun of his tough-guy image in a disgustingly funny scene which involves a superhero costume and a bathroom. I’d recommend “They Came Together” just to see if you can spot all the other romantic comedy movie references. The film’s director, David Wain, worked with Mr. Rudd on previous movies such as “Role Models”, “Wanderlust” and “Wet Hot American Summer” and it’s quite obvious, this duo have a great symmetry together. I can’t wait to see their next project.

In theaters June 27th

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James McDonald

Film/Theater Critic & Interviewer at Red Carpet Crash
Originally from Dublin, Ireland, James is a Movie Critic and Celebrity Interviewer with over 30 years of experience in the film industry as an Award-Winning Filmmaker.
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