Review: The Wedding Ringer

I go into every movie trying to like it. I have a very low comedy threshold. I like Kevin Hart. I lamented Ride Along going straight to DVD in this country. I rented it and enjoyed it. I like Josh Gad. He was good in the underrated sex addiction movie Thanks For Sharing. I can easily get onboard with a ridiculous movie conceit.

Despite all of this, I really struggled to find much to enjoy about The Wedding Ringer.

The not-particularly-impressive high concept at the film’s core betrays the fact that it’s based on a hot spec script from a decade ago, when films like Wedding Crashers were burning up the box office. It sold for a tonne back then, and has sat in development hell ever since. It should’ve stayed there.

There is mirth to be found in the movie, especially if you’re partial to Hart’s rapid-fire patter (which I am), but the suspension of disbelief is fatally undermined by an uneven tone and unearned bids for pathos. The deception that drives the story is as ridiculous as they come, yet the film also covets redemptive character arcs. These two ends are at odds with each other, and resulted in little to no investment in the proceedings.

The oddball supporting cast offers intermittent relief here and there, but overall the film is a depressingly generic exercise.

‘The Wedding Ringer’ Movie Times