Spoiler Alert – Movie Review

The handsome one dies

What’s it about?

Writer Michael Ausiello embarks on a roller-coaster ride of emotions when his partner gets diagnosed with terminal cancer.

What’d we think?

Peter Linning says: Well it’s not just a clever name. Spoiler Alert opens with Kit (Ben Aldridge, the handsome one) dying in the arms of his husband Michael (Jim Parsons) after his struggle with terminal cancer. Acknowledging the end of this journey ultimately serves the structure of the film well, letting us focus more on getting to know our two leads and observing their relationship develop.

This is a light, sweet film that delivers a surprisingly nuanced portrayal of a long-term relationship, but never quite finds it’s stride in balancing comedy and drama, seemingly shifting gears halfway through. I quite enjoyed the occasional smattering of fantasy sequences in which Michael contextualises his childhood trauma by framing his memories as a cheesy 80s sitcom, but even these moments don’t seem to mesh with the rest of the movie.

The movie definitely wins points for not leaning too heavily on the Big Weepy Moments, providing more than enough joyful and humourous moments to make the emotional scenes land effectively. Don’t see if it you don’t enjoy a good cry but if (like me) you do, then this is definitely worth checking out.

Geena Schwartz says: Is it Oscar worthy? No. Is it heart-warming? Yes. Did I cry? Yes. Should you go out of your way to watch it? No. Should you put it on in the background on a lazy Sunday? Yes.

Spoiler Alert is, at its core, a look at a loving relationship fit with all its complexities and nuances. Of course, you can’t have a dramedy without a quirky roommate and a triathlete mother – which are welcome additions. (Love you Sally Field). The chemistry between Parsons and Aldridge is authentic and delicious. The lead performances are rooted in charmingly genuine emotional honesty and it doesn’t go unnoticed, I always love seeing true connections reflected on the big screen. Unfortunately, the film’s premise has been seen and done before with no new flavour to be found here. The themes of love, sacrifice and family are meaningful but nothing to write home about. Watch it, don’t watch it. But if you’re looking for your next favourite Rom-com, it won’t be this.

You'll laugh a bit, you'll cry a bit.
A raconteur by nature and motormouth by trade, the only thing Pete loves more than watching movies is a good debate about movies. He'll argue with anyone about anything, and enjoy it more than is socially acceptable.
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