Directed By: Garry Marshall Written By: Katherine Fugate Main Cast: Michelle Pfeifer, Zac Efron, Robert de Niro, Halle Berry, Jessica Biel, Katherine Heigl, Ashton Kutcher, Jon Bon Jovi, Sarah Jessica Parker, Josh Duhamel and Abigail Breslin Storyline: It’s New Years Eve 2011 and this film tells the tale of a group of people and how they celebrate the end of one year and the beginning of another. Full of memorable faces, there are plenty of different stories intertwining together to bring this film a main-running plot.
THREE OUT OF FIVE STARS ***
This film is one that certainly holds true to a good-hearted entertainment film. It feels the soul with a feeling of warmth and love, every single kind, and lets you leave the cinema feeling a little bit lighter and happier with the world around you. But that is about all that one can take from this film. There is no deeper meaning, nothing that sticks out with awe, it is just a light-hearted, easy going film that fills the cavities of the soul and the cockles of your heart. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with that, it just wasn’t exactly spectacular.
The main problem with this film is the sudden gush of celebrities. Instead of getting attached to characters and getting involved in their stories, it was a flood of emotion for that celebrity, and oh, look at that celebrity, and who knew that celebrity looked like that. There was a true distancing from the storyline because of this which found it hard to fully get along with the film on a truly emotional level. Yes, it was possible to take from it the message it was trying to send out but it wasn’t always easy to fully connect with the people on the screen. Some, naturally, were easier to connect to then others.
One pairing that stood out was Zac Efron and Michelle Pfeifer (and yet, I still couldn’t tell you their character names without looking it up). The film tends to focus on these two characters more than the rest and so this could be the reason they stood out more. The nice thing about this film was how, at the end of the film, everything sort of settled together and you understood how everyone and everything connected together and fit with each other. This was the reason behind the film. The world may be large, a big place like New York City but we all, still, run in small neat circles around each other.
The direction of this film was good, nothing particularly stood out but it was solid filmmaking, and there is no denying it probably was a massive hit at the box office. Not to mention it was nice touch that the location was not just ‘familiar’ but it was also up-to-date with the flashing Neon lights of NYC showing adverts such as ‘Sherlock 2’. Of course, this could just be something that a film student picks up on and not people who watch films just to, you know, enjoy them.
All in all, this film was decent. The many actors and actresses within it performed well and kept everything flowing together nicely and if anything, the brilliant portrayal of characters helped to keep the flow of the story. If one actor couldn’t act well, then the rest of the film and ensemble would have sunk along with them. This film was clearly trying to get fame off of the British Love Actually which was the first of this kind of genre but, unfortunately, it just didn’t work as well. At least, not in my opinion. I have yet to see Valentine’s Day which is directed by the same guy and I have heard follows the same set-up but I can imagine that I would have the same feelings towards it.
New Years Eve is a piece of light-hearted entertainment that will bring a smile to your face and a warm-feeling in your chest. A simple film where one does not need to think too hard.