out of Five
Running time: 92
Disappointing and largely laugh-free British wedding comedy that relies too heavily on gross-out gags and laddish humour and fails to provide either likeable characters or believeable relationships.
What's it all about?
Directed by Jesse Lawrence and co-written by co-star Noel Clarke, The Knot stars Matthew McNulty and Talulah Riley as Jeremy and Alexandra, an engaged couple whose big day has arrived. Having survived their respective stag and hen nights (shown in completely gratuitous graphic flashbacks), the pair attempt to gather their various groomsmen (Noel Clarke, Jason Maza, Davie Fairbanks and Brett Goldstein) and bridesmaids (Susannah Fielding, Rhoda Montemayor, Louise Dylan and token American Mena Suvari), and make their way to the church, but nothing goes quite as planned.
A potential mash-up of The Hangover and Bridesmaids must have seemed like a licence to print money at the planning stage, but sadly, The Knot fails to deliver the key ingredient from both those movies, in that it remains lamentably laugh-free from start to finish. In particular, it relies far too heavily on gross-out gags (there's a fart gag within the opening three minutes and there are two scenes involving toilets and shitting) and frequently unpleasant laddish humour, from both male and female parties, with characters continually behaving in ways that don't feel remotely realistic.
Another problem with the film is that there's no chemistry at all between the two leads, to the point where, when it's briefly suggested that Jeremy is still in love with his crazy ex (Juliet Oldfield), it actually seems entirely plausible. In addition, the entirely predictable script tries to squeeze in too many subplots, ends up spreading each of them too thinly and fails to do any of them justice as a result.
The performances are watchable enough but only Jason Maza (as dopey groomsman Ralphus) has anything approaching comic timing and only Susannah Fielding (as unhappily married bridesmaid Julie) manages to create a character you actually care about. On top of that, the film insists on having two of its characters filming everything, but there's no comic payoff or dramatic purpose to the constant filming other than using it as an excuse to include interview inserts.
Ultimately, The Knot lacks both heart and laughs and the total lack of chemistry between the two leads means that the film fails to engage on any conceivable level. A disappointment.