The Colossal Failure Of The Modern Relationship is hard to love

Despite fine actors and picturesque Niagara wine country, this generic romantic comedy isn’t very memorable

THE COLOSSAL FAILURE OF THE MODERN RELATIONSHIP (Sergio Navarretta). 102 minutes. Opens Friday (June 23). See listing. Rating: NN

Sergio Navarretta’s The Colossal Failure Of The Modern Relationship is a pretty generic romantic comedy with some appealing actors, set in the incredibly picturesque Niagara wine country. 

Alessandra Piccione’s screenplay aims for door-slamming farce, as an unhappily married pianist (19-2’s Krista Bridges) accompanies her food writer husband (Enrico Colantoni) on a working trip to the vineyards, only to run into his boss (David Cubitt) – with whom she’s been having an affair – vacationing with his own girlfriend (Brooke Palsson). 

Awkwardness and wacky misunderstandings ensue, but at least the actors have fun with it – especially Colantoni, who’s so engaged he even manages to make his character’s dopey wardrobe feel like a deliberate choice rather than the work of a distracted costume designer. 

There are a lot of things like that. The cinematography is lush, but the musical score feels lacking. The pacing is sluggish – the film could lose half an hour without blinking – but some scenes snap together just so. The overall experience was inoffensive enough when I saw it a couple of years ago at the Italian Contemporary Film Festival. 

As a stand-alone experience, though? Maybe wait for VOD.

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