Review – Is Will Gluck’s (Easy A, Friends With Benefits) new romantic comedy predictable? Yes. Does it make it bad? Not in the least.
Anyone but You, released December 22nd, 2023, stars Sydney Sweeney, star of Euphoria, and Glen Powell, a staple in the genre. The film has been quite successful, surpassing the $50 million mark domestically and earning $57.4 million after four weeks in theaters. Is the success of Will Gluck’s newest release a sign of a rom-com revival?
After a first date full of passion and sparks, an incident brings the attraction between Bea and Ben to a screeching halt. They are forced to be reunited in Australia for a destination wedding, but the animosity between them threatens to ruin the event. So they stop hating each other, the attendees join in shenanigans to get them together. Bea and Ben do what any mature adult would do in this situation: pretend to be a couple.
It’s been a long time since a romantic comedy like this was released in theaters. With the revival of 2000s culture, a wave of Paris Hilton, Bratz dolls, Juicy Couture, and other Y2K trends has swept over Generation Z, who make the style their own, and millennials, who go through it with nostalgia. At some point, it had to reach the big screen.
Anyone but You picks up on some of the hallmarks of 2000s rom-coms. The Shakespearean adaptation (in this case, Much Ado About Nothing) is reminiscent of 10 Things I Hate About You, or She’s The Man. It’s a perfect example of an enemies-to-lovers trope that was so popular in the genre. Even the final montage, where everyone starts dancing for no reason, takes us back a few decades.
It also means that this film offers nothing new. We know exactly how it’s going to end right from the title screen. But sometimes, you just don’t want a movie to go out of its way for the sake of exploring uncharted territory. Sometimes, all you need is a compelling story, endearing characters, and a joke or two. Anyone but You does make for a good time.
The success of this film, the love of viewers for its predecessors, and the Y2K craze can only lead us to believe that this trend will continue. It remains to be seen whether similarly nostalgic movies will be made in the years to come.
CREDITS: Text by Malena Cortizo A.