Whatever part of the new movie “Love Again” that can be considered positive, is ruined by one of the worst premises for a romantic comedy ever produced. The logline from IMDB for this film is: “A young woman tries to ease the pain of her fiancé’s death by sending romantic texts to his old cell phone number, and forms a connection with the man the number has been reassigned to.”
This movie starts with the tragic death of Mira Ray’s fiance when he is hit by a car as he leaves a coffee shop. This accident happens right in front of Mira while she watches him leave. Rather than show the horrific car accident as Mira’s fiance crossed a street, the director correctly only showed Mira, played by Priyanka Chopra Jonas, looking off to the distance as she witnessed the death of her boyfriend. Some of the critics have proclaimed that this scene is the only funny part of the entire movie; comments that make no sense to me. Mira’s look of disbelief and horror for me was anything but funny, and as an actor is just about the most difficult acting to pull off.
The huge problems with this story start 2 years later when Mira is still in a state of profound grief that will not go away and just gets worse. Mira starts to text messages to her boyfriend’s cell phone, even though he has been gone for 2 years. Most people would just write their thoughts down, not text them. In the meantime, some other man, Rob Burns, played by Sam Heughan, who works as a music producer, and is involved with the singer Céline Dion – who plays herself in this movie, is looking at his cell phone, and suddenly there is a power failure in New York City. The implication here is that because of the power failure, something magical will soon happen. It turns out, according to the logline of this screenplay – that Mira’s boyfriend’s cell phone number was reassigned to Rob, so he is now receiving all of these private and emotional texts from Mira. This is the first massive logical mistake with this idea because anyone who received texts from someone they do not know would type, “Sorry, I think you have the wrong person”, “I am Rob, you are texting to Rob Burns, sorry”. Instead, inexplicably Rob does nothing about these texts and becomes emotionally connected to Mira’s messages to her late boyfriend.
Then, even more ridiculous is that one of the texts is about Mira enjoying a local Opera and Rob attends, hoping for the 1 in billion chance of meeting the woman who is sending these texts? What? How could an idea this bad be greenlighted with millions of dollars at stake and made into a movie? Just think of the odds of any screenplay turning into an actual movie, and this one, with an idea this bad is produced? We can all guess the rest of this story, when Rob and Mira fall in love, then the big conflict and final resolution. The tragedy is, that this entire screenplay could have been fixed, with some relatively minor tweaking, to change the main idea from the absurd into something that is actually believable.
The acting in this movie is good, but the chemistry between Priyanka Chopra and Sam Heughan did not really work throughout their relationship.
The Rotten Tomatoes rating for Love Again is a very low 17%, with my rating about 35% and a pass, all because the entire cell phone premise is so ridiculous.