Romance films can be really enjoyable. Comedies are oftentimes very fun to watch if they don’t try taking things too far. Romantic comedies can be good depending on how they are presented. If given equal parts of romance and comedy then you may end up with a winner on your hands. But if the filmmakers end up swaying too far either way then you’ve got a romance with bad comedy or a comedy with stupid romance. That does not make a good film and actually hurts it in the long run. Do your homework and have it balanced or just stick to one genre. Trust me, it will help your film when all is said and done.
Henry O’Shea is having a hard time in his current situation as he and his family struggle financially after the patriarch passes away. It has even forced him to drop out of med school where he was a promising nursing student that looked to have a bright future. In order to make ends meet, Henry heads to a lavish Manhattan high-rise building where he gets a job as the new doorman. His very high-strung boss George warns him not to become acquainted with the tenants and simply do his job, but the likable Henry can’t help but make friendly. A few friendships later and he ends up meeting the beautiful and very rich Scarlett Dowling. They may be from opposite worlds but that doesn’t stop their love fro blossoming even though it may end up keeping them apart.
What we have here in Falling Up is a very basic premise that has been done numerous times before. The poor boy falls for the spoiled rich girl and they end up falling in love but their different worlds threaten to never let them be happy. We’ve seen it done over and over again, but it’s not bad if done correctly. The problems that plague this film are that the comedy is either over the top of fully non-existent. It makes some of the scenes kind of awkward and almost uncomfortable because you know they’re going for a couple jokes but then all you hear is the sound of crickets chirping. Snoop Dogg isn’t even allowed to be his normal hilarious self and is kind of a dumbed-down version of himself. Same goes to Joe Pantoliano who is one of my favorite actors but his presence is wasted here.
Falling Up does present a really good cast that keeps this from being a total disaster and turns it more towards the romance side and into a really cute film. You’ll find this to be a good date movie some night or even one that you’ll enjoy catching on a bored Friday night when nothing else is on. I’d expect this to be put into the repeat rotation of films that grace TBS Superstation’s “Dinner and a Movie.” Seriously, you’ll get a little entertainment out of this and end up literally saying, “That was cute,” when it’s all said and done. Too bad nothing else is worth saying about it.
The film is shown in 1.78:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format and all looks fine here. Colors are bright and crisp without any problems.
Falling Up is heard in Dolby Digital 2.0 Surround Sound making it not the best sounding film in the world. All action comes out of the front speakers which is just weird because what else besides television DVD sets doesn’t come home in 5.1 surround? It is just strange. Everything sounds alright but it’s not like there is much else besides dialogue to listen for anyway.
Falling Up: A Look Behind The Scenes – A very short and pointless look at filming behind the camera. There is nothing worth seeing here. (4:00)
I’ll give Falling Up the benefit of the doubt here because it ended up being a decent little romantic comedy without so much of the funny business thrown in. That doesn’t totally hinder it from being completely enjoyable though. Don’t think it merits a purchase though because the special features might as well not be there with a simple four minute behind the scenes nothing thrown in. Wait for it to go into a bargain bin or catch it on television one night because it at least deserves a watch once or twice.
Starz/Anchor Bay presents Falling Up. Directed by: David M. Rosenthal. Starring: Joseph Cross, Sarah Roemer, Rachael Leigh Cook, Mimi Rogers, Annette O’Toole, Frankie Shaw, Joe Pantoliano, Snoop Dogg. Written by: David M. Rosenthal & Joseph Matthew Smith. Running time: 98 minutes. Rating: Not Rated. Released on DVD: January 5, 2010. Available at Amazon.com