"We have found a great group rate."
As expected, predictable, typical Hollywood ending, but yet still entertaining. The best laughs were NOT in the trailer which was good, and it was fun, but it's still your typical romantic comedy. In short there is nothing new here.
The plot of Couples Retreat is not exactly groundbreaking, but it does deliver some nice laughs. Four couples, all of them in a rut of some kind, decide to attend a week long retreat in a tropical paradise. As you might expect things don't go entirely according to plan. In some cases relationships are brought to the breaking point instead of being mended. Can these relationships be salvaged? Is there ever any doubt? If you have seen even one romantic comedy in the last 30 years, you already know the answer.
Now, I wouldn't call this a bad movie, but it wasn't groundbreaking either. Vince Vaughn (Dave) is what you might call a character actor, he tends to play that over the top comic relief type guy in most movies, and this one is no exception. Though I would point out that he is a little less energetic in this one than he has been in other movies, which I found a welcome change. The remainder of the cast delivered a pretty serviceable performance, at least for this kind of movie. Jon Favreau (Joey) was especially fun to watch, I believe this is the first time he has paired up with Vaughn since Swingers, and they played off each other quite well. Malin Åkerman was quite convincing as the well meaning wife (Ronnie) of Vaughn. Jason Bateman (Jason) and Kristen Bell (Cynthia) delivered good laughs as the obsessively prepared couple on the verge of divorce and Kristen Davis (Lucy) was clearly having fun as the promiscuous, long suffering wife of Favreau.
As I've pointed out already, this is your typical romantic comedy, in the end everyone goes home happy. Now I have no problem with the genre as a whole, but it is somewhat discouraging that Hollywood is continuing to perpetuate the illusion that couples can always work things out. Come on guys, you are systematically damaging and entire generation of people out there - give us a small measure of reality once in a while. Anyway I actually did quite enjoy this movie, despite the cliche ending. The laughs were both numerous and varied, and the trailer did not spoil the best ones. The acting was pretty good and the ending wasn't completely sappy. However, I can't shake the feeling that the whole thing fell rather flat in the delivery. On the whole the movie didn't leave me completely satisfied, it lacked that small spark of greatness; which is a shame because it had great potential. The pacing was good, I was never bored, but overall Couples Retreat rather blends in to every other RomCom out there.
Not great, but not terrible either. My advice: wait for the DVD or catch a showing on cable. Don't spend the time or money seeing it in the theater. In all honesty I think the inevitable directors cut might deliver a more well rounded and entertaining product.
Final Verdict on Couples Retreat: