My Review of "Love Hard"
Kicking off to the 2021 holiday movie season we have our first high profile RomCom by Netflix.
Love Hard has just come out and it feels to me like the first big Christmas holiday movie of 2021. It has all the tropes and cliches that we know and love so don't be expecting a masterpiece of a movie. What we want is good wholesome fun for the holidays and I think this one gets the job done.
This movie starts off with our main character Natalie. She's basically describing the dating scene that we have today. It's vastly different from generations before because she finds men through online apps so there's a big change in communication. They set the atmosphere right by laying it all out so that a lot of us can relate to it, at least the ones that are still dating.
Natalie's love life is apparently a totally disaster. Fortunately for her, she's able to profit off of all of these disaster dates with a regular column through an internet media site. Throughout the years she's had a lucrative career out of her horrible dating life but she's getting tired of writing about her mishaps. She wants to find true love of course. It wouldn't be a movie if she didn't.
One of her friends describes Natalie as being too picky and opened up the range of her potential suiters to the entire country. She gets a lot more selection this way. This is how she hooks up with a guy named Josh.
Josh seems too good to be true. He's a good looking guy that is interested in all of the things she's into. The two seem to get along really well and I guess they've really started clicking.
Close to Christmas they have a conversation about meeting and I guess Natalie wants to go the extra mile. She decides that it might be a good idea to fly from Los Angeles, CA to Lake Placid, NY to surprise him for Christmas.
Of course things are a little too good to be true and she soon finds out that Josh doesn't exactly look like the Josh in his profile pictures. That's really when the movie starts off and you can just imagine how much of a nightmare that situation might be.
The movie falls into a lot of the same cliches that you see in most holiday romantic comedy movies. The big difference here is that Josh is a short skinny Asian man. I honestly didn't know what to think of it. After a few minutes of contemplating, I don't ever remember seeing someone like Josh in a romantic comedy before. There is usually the Asian romantic interest isn't so short and skinny. He really looked like a normal Asian guy.
Then again, Josh's character is also played by Jimmy O. Yang. I mainly know this actor for his portrayal of Jian Yang from Silicon Valley. I loved the show but I just keep picturing Jimmy O. Yang as that vile character of Silicon Valley. It almost totally ruined the movie for me.
All of a sudden I realized how we see Asian men in movies. Every time an Asian character shows up in a movie it's usually portrayed in such manner. The best comparison I could make is if you had Ken Jeong as a romantic lead for a movie. It's not going to happen.
This is generally how movies are made though. I'm not saying Jimmy isn't an attractive guy but Hollywood generally doesn't choose average looking people as romantic interests. This can be said the same for all races and genders. It's really unfortunate and I'm starting to see a need for it. If we continually digest all of these movies we might start having unrealistic expectations in our own lives.
The movie is fortunately an enjoyable watch. There are a handful of genuinely good funny moments in this one. I liked how the movie flowed and it was paced rather nicely.
I wonder if movies like this would work if they were unpredictable. We kind of overvalue plot twists and turns in movies. I think that holidays avoid these major twists and turns because they're meant to be re-watched. Depending on the movie, after knowing a big plot twist or something to throw you off, the movie doesn't really have as much of a kick to it after re-watches.
Holiday movies are fun because they're like pop songs, you can remember the dialogue pretty quickly or even predict the dialogue that's going to happen. There's a sense of comfort to this and I think this movie was able to capture this comfort level pretty well.
Overall, it is a conventional holiday movie that will be able to entertain. Those of you that love Christmas movies will eat this movie all up. It does everything that you'll expect it to do and give you some laughs along the way. I have to give this movie a 7 out of 10. I give it a few extra points because they dared to use Jimmy O. Yang as the love interest and made it work.