Ticket To Paradise Review


PLOT: A divorced couple attempt to stop their daughter from marrying a man she just met while on vacation in Bali. Will they break the happy twosome apart, or find their old romance rekindled?

REVIEW: Ticket To Paradise is a return to the travelogue, romantic comedies from the past. It’s a cinematic reunion of two very charismatic stars, George Clooney and Julia Roberts. It’s complete with beautiful scenery, an attractive cast, and a script that follows a familiar path. Aside from the crowd-pleasing partnership of Roberts and Clooney, the film also features some of today’s brightest, including Kaitlyn Dever, Billie Lourd, Sean Lynch, and Lucas Bravo (who was terrific in this year’s Mrs. Harris Goes to Paris). It all has the makings of being a delightful experience at the movies. And yet, with all this, Paradise is predictable, dull, and just not very funny.

David (Clooney) and Georgia (Roberts) are happily divorced. They’ve figured out how to raise their daughter Lily (Dever) without dealing with each other. Things change for the two when Lily makes a bold and rash decision while vacationing in Bali; she falls in love with a local named Gede (Maxime Bouttier). Instead of returning to the US and becoming a lawyer, Lily and Gede announce their marriage plans. To stop the couple from repeating their mistake, Georgia and David make a covert plan to end their daughter’s wedding. However, their time together may prove to be more problematic than they could have ever anticipated. The audience, of course, can see it a mile away.

The attraction of putting both George Clooney and Julia Roberts together can be magical. It’s worked in the past, and their chemistry isn’t lost in Ticket to Paradise at all. There is an instant charm as the two spend time squabbling and ultimately re-discover each other, trying to help (?) their daughter. And yet, the screenplay relies heavily on that chemistry. These two characters aren’t likable people. One of their plans to stop the wedding is downright disgusting. It’s difficult to sympathize with anybody conspiring against a little girl to steal something from her. Georgia and David are an awful couple who somehow raised a thoughtful and kind daughter. Props to that, I suppose.

As for the rest of the cast, Kaitlyn Dever is perhaps the most sympathetic character as the daughter dealing with nightmarish parents. Her performance is terrific here, and her romance with Bouttier’s Gede feels effortless. And yes, Billie Lourd is terrific, once again, as a scene-stealing side character with little to do with much. Aside from the fact she is Lily’s friend, she is underused here. Just be thankful she can liven things up. And finally, Lucas Bravo once again shines as Georgia’s current younger flame. While David keeps joking about how dull he is, I was rooting for Georgia to return to him immediately. It was a less predictable romance than what we get.

With a game cast, Ticket to Paradise ultimately feels dated. The jokes occasionally will leave you with a smirk, but it’s rarely funny. Yet, for fans of 90’s romcoms, you might find comfort in the generic story and dialogue. It’s not necessarily bad, just familiar and not that engaging. Even still, those looking for a return to the kind of movie that made Roberts’ America’s sweetheart and Clooney “the sexiest man alive” may find enough here to satiate your needs. It’s not exactly a terrible film. The elements are entirely on display, but their characters aren’t that interesting.

Ticket to Paradise is a by-the-numbers romantic comedy that will please those missing their Julia Roberts/George Clooney fix. For the rest of us, it may not be nearly as magical as it should be. The script is familiar and predictable, and the main characters aren’t particularly commendable. The supporting cast is all good; Dever, Lourd, and Bravo are especially notable. Yet ultimately, you know what you will get with this basic romantic comedy. It’s a shame, as it was nice to see the big-screen pairing of the film’s leads again. Perhaps they’ll try with a better film if this ticket lights up the box office.

Ticket to Paradise



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Source: JoBlo.com

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JimmyO is one of JoBlo.com’s longest-tenured writers, with him reviewing movies and interviewing celebrities since 2007 as the site’s Los Angeles correspondent.