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Union St. Journal

The Union St. Journal: Cherry Creek High School's official news source

Union St. Journal

The Union St. Journal: Cherry Creek High School's official news source

Union St. Journal

‘The Idea of You’ is Unsurprisingly Insufferable

The Idea of You is Unsurprisingly Insufferable
Amazon Prime

It’s rare that a movie doesn’t make me feel anything. Either it’s sad, funny, impressive, or so bad it makes me angry. This was not the case with The Idea of You, the Harry Styles fanfiction brought to you by Michael Showalter, esteemed director of Wet Hot American Summer.

The predominant thing I felt during this 115 minute slog was an overwhelming urge to turn off the TV — if it weren’t for the commitment I made to myself to write this review, I would’ve. I really did hope this would be good. I love Anne Hathaway, I love corny rom-coms, and I’ve read enough fanfiction to understand the appeal of a plot like this. But this movie blew.

Hayes Campbell (Nicholas Galitzine) is a 24-year-old British boybander with horribly placed tattoos and an exceptional lack of maturity; Soléne Marchand (Anne Hathaway) is a divorced 40-year-old mother with bangs who always looks like she’s just seen a ghost. The writing is excruciatingly on-the-nose, from the song Hayes serenades Soléne with at Coachella a few hours after they meet (“I know that you’re a little bit older”) to the Tag Heuer watch that represents their willingness to be together.

It has the classic plot points of a celebrity-normie romance: a steamy summer spent traveling the world, dramatic departures and reunions, communicating via the Graham Norton Show. I can excuse even the cheesiest of writing as long as the leads have chemistry, but the problem here is that they don’t. 

Hayes is insufferable (drinking milk straight out of the carton the first time you go to someone’s house? Really?) and Galitzine doesn’t give him an ounce of charm. He thinks that his friends wanting money from him is comparable to Soléne’s husband and the father of her daughter cheating on her and leaving her for a younger woman. He makes quips that are supposed to be funny but come off as childish and rude, and the only reason Soléne could possibly be interested in him is a crippling lack of self-worth.

This movie tries to be a comedy, but the funniest moments come from the minorest characters: Eva (Perry Mattfeld), Soléne’s ex-husband’s mistress, has impeccable timing and Soléne’s daughter’s friends have great delivery. But these little golden moments are completely overshadowed by the dullest love story of all time. I would build a straw house on top of this romance, that’s how few sparks there are.

The script is riddled with plot holes, too. Soléne “pays the sitter” after coming home from dinner when her daughter is 13. The same daughter needs to be driven to and from school months after her dad gifts her a car. It all reeks of a lack of attention to detail, like the writers were rushing to arrange the next cliché interaction between Hayes and Soléne. It’s just awful writing.

Everything The Idea of You tries to do falls extremely flat. The script is bad, the premise is shaky, and the execution is bland. Anne Hathaway should’ve run far, far away, but I guess for $7 million I would’ve done this too.

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About the Contributor
Katya Roudakov
Katya Roudakov, A&E Editor & Design Manager
Howdy! I’m Katya, a senior and third-year USJ member. I love writing, reading, space, and science, and I’m super excited to continue working with the USJ as A&E editor and Design Editor. When I’m not doing things for school, you can find me rock climbing, watching movies, or mediocrely playing a handful of instruments.

Comments (5)

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  • S

    Sue Christina-Ray | May 22, 2024 at 10:49 PM

    This critic is so Wrong on Every point he made.. Totally out of touch- and in the minority.. Nick G is Awesome in this role!! Full of charisma.. loved him- as I did Anne H.. Hopefully- people will Ignore this ridiculous review-

  • A

    Alice | May 19, 2024 at 3:31 PM

    I initially wasnt sure about the issue with the age gap, but I actually really enjoyed this film and the acting. I dont normally enjoy watching these types of romantic movies, but I felt this was something different, and actually really sweet.

  • D

    Debrina | May 15, 2024 at 3:51 AM

    Tried hard ro get into this film. Anne is just NOT a sexy alluring woman that this film needed, wrong part for her imo. I guess your only as good as the lines your dealt. Just not a good film. Good for back ground noise. 3.5 out of a 10.

    • J

      Jill | May 19, 2024 at 7:05 PM

      I’m afraid I have to disagree. This is fun and romantic, a strong film with great music, and I loved everything about it. It’s too bad you are so cynical and can’t enjoy a good rom-com, but most of us can.
      Anne Hathaway is wonderful, and Nicholas Galitzine is so talented. His voice is great. I enjoyed this playlist and have been listening to it nonstop on Spotify. I will watch it repeatedly. I hope this love story will inspire people to start believing again and bring some fun and hope back into our troubled era.

    • C

      Chele | May 20, 2024 at 6:44 AM

      Its just a fun summer movie. It wasnt made to be oscar worthy. I would think we would all know what to expect from this. Lots of people want miindless films to distract from life. This did the job fine. This article takes it too seriously.