Just Married takes a realistic view of marriage, love, and romance; stirs in a healthy heaping of Hollywood wackiness; then casts honesty aside for a tired out, been there done that ending. Maybe Married is a comedy with no surprises, all typical head clobbering and “dumb American” jokes. But there’s something sweetly endearing about this mildly funny little newlywed endeavor.
It begins at the end, with disaster and misery; then flashes back to where it all began, taking us through the paces as our not so happy couple meets and falls in love. Marriage follows love, then off to a honeymoon from hell in which their relationship is tested past the breaking point. What saves Married from bottom shelf misery is its intention to show long term commitment and love as it is, a series of ups and downs, not one eternal, heaven-sent encounter. That and some charming work from both leads, Brittany Murphy and Ashton Kutcher makes borrowed ideals a palatable encounter.
Kutcher is so far a one-dimensional actor with only one character in his repetoire. But that character is quite honestly good, and for me not one that I’m really tired of yet. His chemistry with Murphy sells it, his personality enabling him to play off her comedically without seeming stupid.
To her credit, Brittany Murphy looks less skanky than usual… for once she comes off as legitimately cute. For those wondering, yes her head is still too big for her body. Married has just the right amount of wholesome sweetness built into her spoiled little character to keep things wholly light and funny without getting bogged down in real-to-life worries.
Just Married is just a few nicely done laughs trying to be a heartfelt little comedy about trudging through life. Sadly, the end blows away a lot of its honesty credits when it opts out for a cheap and soliloquy-ridden finale. But the lead in is well done without stepping towards excellence, and that’s enough to make Just Married a lean and enjoyable good time.