Posted: 06/03/2010


When In Rome


by Shannon Huebscher

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One would think a movie that stars the likes of Kristen Bell, Will Arnett, Jon Heder, Danny DeVito and the incredible Anjelica Huston, would be one heck of a film. Unfortunately for movie-goers, When In Rome is lackluster to say the least.

It is formulaic to exhaustion - how many times are we going to see a young girl who is such a workaholic that she has no love life (The Devil Wears Prada, The Proposal, Knocked Up), or that the “group of friends” are a little quirky (Bridget Jones’ Diary, I Love You, Man), or even a super bitchy female boss (The Devil Wears Prada (again), How To Lose a Guy in 10 Days)? When In Rome tried to pack in every cliche possible (slapstick! awkward public speeches! magic!), without really focusing on what should matter in a film: the plot.

So here’s the plot: workaholic Beth (Kristen Bell) works as a curator for a museum in New York City and has to travel to Rome for her younger sister’s impromptu wedding - while there, she drunkenly decides to take coins out of the Fountain of Love to help save those poor souls from a wish that won’t come true. Little does Beth know that by doing so, she has cursed those five people (which happen to be all men and include Will Arnett, Jon Heder, Danny DeVito, Dax Shepard and Josh Duhamel) into falling madly in love with her and hilarity ensues. And along the way, she really falls in love with one of the five and there is a happier ever after.

Bell still brings some life into her character, via her inherent charm, but when a film is so predictably made as this, it’s hard to do much of anything with it.

Shannon Huebscher is a freelance writer living in Minneapolis.

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