My Last Five Girlfriends Movie Review
Duncan (Patricks) is an awkward guy who, when we meet him, is about to commit suicide due to his disastrous last five relationships. So we travel into his mind to meet his girlfriends: Wendy (Adams), Olive (March), Rhona (Cassel), Natalie (Bukovics) and Gemma (Harris), who might finally be the one. But no, the path to true love isn't remotely simple.
What makes this film watchable is filmmaker Kemp's wild imagination, as he indulges in surreal animated cutaways and wacky fantasy sequences that are both original and visually fantastic, although the framing device of a Duncan World theme park, in which each girlfriend is a specific type of thrill ride, wears a bit thin. But along the way, Kemp makes some astute, witty observations on how relationships develop and collapse.
But it's a shame that Duncan isn't more of a compelling central figure.
Patricks is fine in the role, he looks like a nice enough guy, but the character is so painfully pathetic, and Patricks has so little on-screen charisma, that we never really care what happens to him. What perks up the film are the women, most notably the always-engaging Harris. Although even they are ill-served by the script, which frequently drifts into insufferable smugness.
Kemp is clearly a filmmaker to watch, and he has crafted a lively, cool-looking movie on a very small budget (it has echoes of both Marc Webb's 500 Days of Summer and Paul King's Bunny & the Bull). But he needed to get more of a spark from his cast and create a much more engaging central character who we could actually cheer for as he stumbles through the carnage of each relationship. The script touches on all kinds of extremely telling themes and isn't afraid to be strikingly honest, but we can feel the film straining to be both dramatic and comical. Yet it ends up being neither.