Jennifer Lopez Returns to Rom-Coms In ‘Marry Me’

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Published February 13, 2022
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The Montclarion
Kat Valdez (Jennifer Lopez) looks into the crowd of fans after finding out her soon-to-be husband cheated on her. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

In the new film “Marry Me,” Jennifer Lopez plays Kat Valdez, a pop megastar who is about to marry her superstar fiancé Bastian, played by Maluma. But when she finds out he cheated on her with her assistant, she’s stuck at the altar.

Oh, and the wedding is set at a concert being live-streamed in front of 20 million fans. In order for Kat not to feel like a failure or get negative press, she decides to go through with the wedding and spontaneously choose a fan in the audience to marry instead of Bastian.

Kat (Jennifer Lopez) chooses to spontaneously marry Charlie (Owen Wilson) to not look like a failure. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Kat (Jennifer Lopez) chooses to spontaneously marry Charlie (Owen Wilson).
Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

That fan is school math teacher Charlie Gilbert, played by Owen Wilson, who surprisingly shows no grudges and is easily persuaded into going on stage to marry Kat. They decide to go along with the relationship since it would be good publicity for Kat, but they end up realizing it might not be just for the publicity after all. Throughout the film, we see this new relationship blossom between the megastar and low-key math teacher.

The plot is not necessarily bad, but it is definitely surprising and borderline odd. It does not make much sense as to why Kat would decide to marry a random man and why he would easily go along with it. The beginning of the film is jolting due to the plot, but it gets slowly burned out in a good way as the movie goes on.

Though the film uses many stereotypical and nostalgic storyline elements, in a way it still feels fresh because we have not seen a major rom-com like this in a long time. For a rom-com to happen in 2022, be released in theaters and star two big actors — this is something of an ancient artifact. For something that used to be so common, it feels refreshing to have it back, and it makes sense that it would come back with one of the genre’s former reigning queens.

Not to mention, Kat lives a life quite identical to the one Lopez herself is living now, from her celebrity status to her music career, the emphasis on her dancing and performing and her relationships being in the news 24/7.

Charlie (Owen Wilson) and Kat (Jennifer Lopez) share an intimate moment dancing together. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Charlie (Owen Wilson) and Kat (Jennifer Lopez) share an intimate moment dancing together.
Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Like Lopez, Kat is a hopeless romantic, or as Lopez would call it, a “hopeful romantic.” They are in love with love and will not stop until it works out for real. In the movie, we see Kat attempt to figure out what her relationship with Charlie means, to see if it can really work for both of them before they can come to a conclusion.

You can compare this film to Lopez’s current rekindling with Ben Affleck. It is ironic that even though this film has been pushed back for more than a year, as it was originally slated to come out in February 2021, it is more timely now than ever since Lopez is back in a relationship with the man she was involved with during the height of her rom-com career.

Charlie (played by Owen Wilson) and Kat (played by Jennifer Lopez) make their first appearance on the red carpet together and unexpectedly run into Bastian (Maluma). Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Charlie (Owen Wilson) and Kat (Jennifer Lopez) make their first appearance on the red carpet together and unexpectedly run into Bastian (Maluma).
Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Lopez’s acting is ideal for the film, and surprisingly, the chemistry between her and Wilson is not as hard to believe as you might think. The film thrives on the moments where the two are together privately. Even if it can be awkward, there is a sense of authenticity and charisma in both of them.

Accompanying the film is the soundtrack full of the same type of music Lopez is known for. A few songs featured in the film, if I were to suggest my favorites, are “Marry Me (Kat & Bastian Duet),” “After Love (Part 1)” and “Love of My Life (Marry Me).”

Kat (Jennifer Lopez) and Bastian (Maluma) perform on stage together. Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

Kat (Jennifer Lopez) and Bastian (Maluma) perform on stage together.
Photo courtesy of Universal Pictures

In all honesty, the only reason to watch “Marry Me” is for Lopez, or if you are simply looking for something fitting for Valentine’s Day. It also does not hurt if you are a pop culture fanatic like I am, because then you will definitely appreciate this film for what it is.

Overall, “Marry Me” is a harmless rom-com that is exactly what you would expect it to be, with some fun, modern, nostalgic twists. Lopez is perfectly cast in a role that was made for only someone of her caliber and someone that could relate as much to the character as she does.

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