Amongst the changing leaves and spooky season, a tropical getaway awaits in theaters. George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Kaitlyn Dever and Maxime Bouttier star in the recently released movie, “Ticket to Paradise.” This movie is a romantic comedy set in Bali, Indonesia, where the recently graduated Lily Cotton, played by Dever, vacations before becoming a full time partner at a law firm. The plot is propelled by Clooney and Robert’s characters, David and Georgia Cotton, the divorced parents of Lily, as they put their bickering and simmering hatred for one another aside and rush to the island in efforts to prevent their daughter from marrying a seaweed farmer and making the same rash decision they both regret.
There is no question that the true stars and primary reason to see the movie are Clooney and Roberts as they deliver a delightful rom-com. The pair’s chemistry on screen is hilarious and invites the audience into their complicated, love-hate co-parenting relationship. Their playful spite toward each other is contagious and had the audience cheering them both on. The chemistry displayed by these two was contrived through their long history of making movies together. The most notable, is in the “Ocean’s” trilogy, where Clooney and Roberts play opposite one another as love interests. “Ticket to Paradise” is kind of like a continuation of the “Ocean’s” franchise if Tess and Danny Ocean remained split up, had a child and developed a more magnetized loathing towards one another.
As the genre suggests, the comedy portion of “rom-com” was more evident than romance. Most of the comedy was produced through Clooney and Roberts, both throwing zings, insults and jokes at the other’s expense. Based on the blooper reel at the end of the movie, it was revealed that many of the back and forth insults and jokes were improvised. This also demonstrates the skills and chemistry Roberts and Clooney share.
Without the quality jokes and jousting aspect, the movie would not have a lot going for it. The romance is more implied than explicitly shown because the plot did not fully explain the details of the failed or otherwise successful romances in the Cotton family.
The weakest points in the movie, besides the lack of full development of the romances, is the acting of Dever and the depiction of Bali. Dever does a decent job of falling in love with a seaweed farmer she just met. However, many of the scenes fail to truly convince the audience that she was invested in her fella or in the character from an actor’s standpoint. Dever is carried by Roberts and Clooney throughout the movie and in any scene without them, Dever’s efforts seem half-hearted and fake.
While trying to fall in love and sabotage, Bali is the background for a majority of the movie. It is depicted as a white American’s dream vacation,.with perfectly quaffed palm trees, amazing sunsets and the super affordable luxury living quarters. Although this movie was not expected to address many of the cultural aspects presented, it was almost a true Hallmark movie- all fun and fantasy, no reality.
With all of its flaws, this movie was very delightful. It proves that the art of rom-coms is not dead and that there is hope for the future. Roberts and Clooney truly deliver a great upbeat, mischievous, feel good movie that has everyone wanting to forget all their cares and run on a beach with their lover.