TL;DR – It shows why casting is so important because if you cast a divorced couple, picking good friends that swing for the fences helps sell everything.
Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene
Disclosure – I was invited to a press screening of this film.
Ticket to Paradise Review –
Many components go into making a film. Might you need to dress up one location to look like another? You might need to manage a large crowd in the background. Maybe make a set look like it is outside while filming it on a soundstage. Yet you could have the locations, script, and crew, but if you get the chemistry with the cast wrong, it could all fall apart. Today we look at a film that nails all of those factors you need when your main protagonists high-key hate each other.
So to set the scene, there was one time when David (George Clooney) and Georgia (Julia Roberts) were deeply in love, but that was a long time ago, and unfortunately not in a galaxy far, far away when they had to come into contact with each other at their daughter Lily’s (Kaitlyn Dever) graduation. Wanting to get away from the stress of the upcoming job in a law firm in Chicago, Lily and her friend Wren (Billie Lourd) head out to Bali to chill for a couple of weeks. But when they get left behind by the boat in the middle of the ocean and get rescued by the charming Gede (Maxime Bouttier), Lily thinks there may be more for her here in the country. Hearing of the pending nuptials, David and Georgia dash out to the country and put aside their differences for their daughter’s sake, but it is hard to let bygones be bygones.
The strength of Ticket to Paradise is 100% knowing the power of its cast, like straight up having outtakes in the credits like it was in the early 2000s. Yes, we are talking about George and Julia, but also the rest of the cast. You can tell that the two leads brought their real-life friendship into this because it is quite a balance to honestly portray someone who was once deeply in love and now despise each other. Their banter could have become tiring throughout, but you hit every nuance of their performance. There were times when I was laughing my backside off and also times when I was crying. More than just a drawcard for their names, both actors bring their a-game, and there were times when everyone was smiling, but you felt that no acting was required.
While George and Julia are the film’s main focus, they are not the only ones that shine. You can feel the joy and love between Lily and Gede as they try to navigate their feuding parents. I like that Gede is not a fool, which usually would be the case in a film like this, and would not fit his character and a smile that is a mile long. You can feel the weight of navigating her feuding parents in Kaitlyn’s performance, which you need to work because she is the heart of the movie. Billie Lourd works well as comic relief, okay, not just the comic relief, and all of Gede’s extended family is a delight. A couple of sort of one-shot characters appear, and they have some of the funniest lines in the film.
With regards to tone, I would categorise it as delightfully awkward, with the film walking right up to the line of being ‘too much’ without crossing over it. That tone works because the audience was in stitches throughout the film. It also helps because otherwise, the narrative is relatively straightforward, and I don’t think there will be any real surprises for you here. It also has a very romantic and non-critical view of Bali, which makes sense in the context of the film, but I think it will be a bit disappointing for those who love the island. But that just be me trying to disassociate all the Bali locations filmed in Brisbane. Most of the Balinese in the film is not subtitled, and I hope it all is correct and adds a new level of fun for those who can speak it.
In the end, do we recommend Ticket to Paradise? Yes, we do. I don’t think this is a revolutionary film in any way. However, it absolutely knows how to make the most of its cast’s chemistry which elevates the entire proceeding. If you liked Ticket to Paradise, I would recommend to you The Lost City.
By Brian MacNamara: You can follow Brian on Twitter Here, when he’s not chatting about Movies and TV, he’ll be talking about International Relations, or the Solar System.
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Credits – All images were created by the cast, crew, and production companies of Ticket to Paradise
Directed by – Ol Parker
Written by – Ol Parker & Daniel Pipski
Music by – Lorne Balfe
Cinematography by – Ole Bratt Birkeland
Edited by – Peter Lambert
Production/Distribution Companies – Working Title Films, Smokehouse Pictures, Red Om Films & Universal Pictures
Starring – George Clooney, Julia Roberts, Kaitlyn Dever, Maxime Bouttier, Billie Lourd, Lucas Bravo, Geneviève Lemon, Dorian Djoudi, Ilma Nurfauziah, Agung Pindha, Ifa Barry, Cintya Dharmayanti, Nom Gunadi, Inaya Servais, Ida Pandita Putu Wirata & Eduard Alexander Waloni
Rating – Australia: M; Canada: na; Germany: 6; New Zealand: M; United Kingdom: 12A; United States: PG-13