Just Married (2003) starring Ashton Kutcher, Brittany Murphy, Christian Kane, David Rasche, Thad Luckinbill, David Agranov, Taran Killam, Valeria Andrews directed by Shawn Levy Movie Review

Just Married (2003)   3/53/53/53/53/5

Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy in Just Married (2003)

A Lampoon Style Honeymoon Hell

It really doesn't say much about the a when the most memorable thing is the incidental music. Sadly that is the case with "Just Married" a movie billed as a light hearted romantic comedy, which out of those three things which is really true is that it is light hearted. Starring Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy as troubled newly weds it seems for the most to recycle ideas and gags from various other movies and hope that the attractive stars can carry it off. Sadly they don't and although "Just Married" isn't a train wreck of a movie it suffers from a lack of originality.

After accidentally hitting her in the face with a football Tom (Ashton Kutcher - Texas Rangers) and Sarah (Brittany Murphy - 8 Mile) soon fall in love and much to the disapproval of Sarah's rich parents get married. But on their honeymoon in Europe everything goes wrong from ruined accommodation through to damaged cars making it a less than happy honeymoon especially when Sarah's ex Peter Prentis (Christian Kane) shows up during their stay in Venice, leading to a row of all rows and their marriage seeming to be over before it barely begun.

Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy in Just Married (2003)

The storyline to "Just Married" itself isn't that bad if a little unoriginal, as we watch a honeymoon from hell cause the newly married Tom and Sarah to argue and split. It has an almost feeling of "National Lampoon's European Vacation" as their honeymoon in Europe suffers one problem after another with mishaps a plenty thanks to Tom and as such feels all too familiar. Even the arguing which ensues after each problem reminds me of other movies and so it continues. And that is the trouble with the storyline it feels like between writer Sam Harper and director Shawn Levy they've pillaged various elements from a variety of other movies. Even before the honeymoon, the meet cute and when Tom meets Sarah's well off parents just feels like it's been ripped out of another movie.

And the trouble doesn't stop there because many of the jokes feel like they have been inspired by other movies. A scene which sees Sarah's beloved dog fall foul of a window accident is just one of many scenes, set piece gags which feel like they are imitating other movies. Which wouldn't be so bad if the joke worked and made you laugh but as a rule they don't. And what's worse is that jokes end up being repeated such as bloody noses and banged heads. Probably the funniest scenes are when the warring Tom and Sarah return from honeymoon and try and outdo each other as they walk through the airport.

Then you get the performances and it has to be said that Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy worked well together, their comic timing was for the most spot on and in a strange way were believable as a young couple in love. In many ways the weakness of the storyline and the jokes ended up being their downfall as it made them look a lot worse than they really were and as such were to be frank unmemorable.

Which really leaves just the soundtrack to come to the rescue and whilst there are various unforgettable musical moments featuring songs such as "Do Your Thing" and "What Is Love" it is an instrumental piece that is also used in the movie "True Romance" which leaves an impression.

What this all boils down to is that "Just Married" is sadly a less than spectacular movie. It's neither very romantic nor very funny with a feeling that many of the jokes and scenes have been inspired by other movies. Surprisingly the performances of Ashton Kutcher and Brittany Murphy are quite nice but they are let down by weak material.