When We First Met Netflix film review

★★

Directed by: #AriSandel

Starring: #AdamDevine, #AlexandraDaddario, #ShelleyHennig, #RobbieArnell and #AndrewBachelor

Netflix Film Review by: Charlotte Little

When We First Met is a 2018 American romantic comedy widely released by Netflix, this film was directed by Ari Sandel (The Duff) and starred Adam Devine, Alexandra Daddario, Shelley Hennig, Robbie Arnell and Andrew Bachelor.


The film's premise is essentially the reimagining of Groundhog Day, but where the central character is stuck in the friend-zone, rather than stuck in time. After spending an evening with the girl of his dreams only to become nothing more than friends, Noah discovers the ability to use a vintage photo booth to travel back in time to change the course of history in his advantage.


The story opens on 1st November 2017 where we see Noah (Adam Devine) at Avery's (Alexandra Daddario) engagement party. The audience is led to believe that these two are the happy couple after we witness a flashback retelling the night they first met. We watch their encounter at a Halloween party three years earlier, which led them to a jazz bar and a photo booth.


It turns out that Avery is marrying a Hollister-esque model type called Ethan. Noah proceeds to drown his sorrows through the comfort of alcohol with Carrie (Shelley Hennig), Avery's best friend. Noah takes a trip to the aforementioned jazz bar in Carrie's attempt to take him home to sleep his drunkenness off. Noah stumbles into the photo booth to continue his pathetic pity party, and he transports back in time where he wakes up on the morning of 31st October 2014. USA Today reports on the Ebola epidemic, blueberry flavoured Red Bull hasn't been invented yet, and Noah still has the chance to confess his feelings to Avery.


When We First Met takes us through a variety of rotations of the Halloween party, capturing Noah attempts to rectify his behaviour in the hope that Avery will fall in love with him. The dialogue alone should come with a spoiler alert, laying out the entire plot before the film is even halfway through. It's easy to guess how things are going to play out as soon as Carrie preaches to Noah that healthy relationships are built on mutual chemistry rather than one person's desire.


Devine's substance carries the almost laugh-free film, but his talent has been put to better use in previous projects such as Pitch Perfect. His sarcasm and facial slapstick aren't to the taste of everyone's palette. I must admit that I did laugh out loud a few times during the 'stalker' scenes when Carrie and Avery attacked Noah with a house plant.


Noah's narcissism is difficult to overlook; it's pretty hard to care about a character who suffers from self-pity syndrome so badly that he feels the need to continuously travel back in time to make a woman fall in love with him.


Thirty minutes into watching this movie and you'll start to wonder why you're still watching it, and whether it's time to pick something more rewarding. This film is the epitome of unnecessary. I don't think the world needs a movie where a man retains the ideology that he is entitled to the 'woman of his dreams' and is willing to use time travel to manipulate someone into being with him. Forty minutes in and I was secretly hoping I would hear the low humming of the TARDIS. Time Lord Jodie Whittaker would shake some sense into Noah, condemning his abuse of time travel.


#CharlotteLittle