Some Kind of Beautiful

| December 1, 2015

Looking at the poster for Some Kind of Beautiful and seeing the gleaming faces of Salma Hayek and Jessica Alba, and of course the sterling silver fox Pierce Brosnan, it is easy to believe in the potential that this romantic comedy will be a decent time-killer with fleeting moments of amusement and cuteness. Don’t be fooled by the gleaming faces or by the label of “romantic comedy”. Previously titled How to Make Love Like An Englishman (which would have been as misleading as the official title, but slightly more interesting at least), Some Kind of Beautiful falls short of many things, but on top of the list are these three significant goals: providing material worthy of its cast, making us laugh and inspiring romance.

Richard (Pierce Brosnan) is the son of a Cambridge University professor and womanizer, who follows in his father’s footsteps with both his career and lifestyle– both of which gives up after impregnating his student Kate (Jessica Alba) and moving to Los Angeles to play the stable husband, while his young vivacious wife pursues a career in finance. After many years their balance is disrupted and things become predictably more complicated by many factors, including Kate’s sister Olivia (Salma Hayek).

From endless clich├ęs to blatantly misusing a solid cast, Some Kind of Beautiful has many fatal flaws. Hayek and Brosnan have great chemistry, but the bad writing all but kills their flame. The talents of Malcolm McDowell and Benjamin McKenzie are lost on two-dimensional, pointless characters, as are Hayek’s comedic abilities. The only real sparks of humor come from her and her animation, which we may remember fondly from her early roles. The story is convoluted by several unnecessary tangents, including an immigration issue, the ailing health of Richard’s father, Olivia’s suffering love life and professional transition from book editor to author. None of these elements add to or enhance the story, or even save it from being pretty boring throughout.

Some Kind of Beautiful even makes pitiful use of the cute little boy who plays Richard and Kate’s son. As adorable as he may be, the scenes that are supposed to be heartwarming are not at all effective in tugging at the heartstrings, leaving the film flailing across the board. There are very few laughs to be had, the heat and chemistry between Brosnan and Hayek is short-lived and it simply does not have enough soul to survive.

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