THE LOVE PUNCH written and directed by Joel.
THE LOVE PUNCH written and directed by Joel Hopkins, with Emma Thompson, Pierce Brosnan, Celia Imrie and Timothy Spall. An eOne release. 94 minutes. Opens Friday (May 23). For venues and times, see Movies. Rating: NN
The recent spate of aging baby boomer dramedies – e.g., The Best Exotic Marigold Quartet – has likely encouraged this frothy hybrid romantic comedy-heist picture. Thankfully, the actors can sell just about anything.
Emma Thompson and Pierce Brosnan play divorced Brits who reunite to get payback from the slimy French businessman who scammed them out of their life savings. This involves flying down to the Côte d’Azur, impersonating Texans to crash a wedding and attempting to steal a $10 million diamond.
The script is ludicrous, full of plot holes and unfunny jokes about physical ailments, and Joel Hopkins’s direction feels laboured. (His Last Chance Harvey, also with Thompson, was much more graceful.)
But the two leads, along with Celia Imrie and Timothy Spall as their best friends, seem up for anything, and their enthusiasm carries the picture along. Look for two amusing running gags, one involving a character’s exciting past, the other involving Skype.