I’ve just stumbled out of Will Gluck’s Anyone But You (Sony, 12.21), and I’m trying to imagine sitting through a more synthetic or robotic Millennial-Zoomer romcom…I wanted to leap into a river of molten lava.
Set on the sunny Australian coast and based on William Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing, it’s about the usual emotional avoidance crap…pretending and faking feelings and putting in appearances and never coming clean until the very end…romantic hokum at its most hellish and soul-numbing.
Anyone But You is a skin-deep farce of the lowest order…slick and precocious…basically like sitting through a ping-pong game…bad for your soul and UTTERLY HORRIBLE…I felt as if I couldn’t breathe.
Glen Powell has that hunky X-factor thing going on, but Gluck and Illana Wolpert’s script is so arch and fizzy and deeply infuriating in the way it flaunts its plasticity, it nearly smothers Powell’s soul…not even a vague semblance of human-like behavior to be found.
Sydney Sweeney’s boobs are bouncy and undeniable, but to me she’s nothing. Okay, she works hard at the physical farce stuff, but she refuses to relax and is constantly “acting.”
There’s more attention paid to Powell’s brawny, bare-chested physique and his butt cheeks (and the butt cheeks of Joe Davidson, playing an Australian surfer dude) than to Sweeney’s boobs or any other female anatomical diversions…it’s basically empty beefcake with a side order of cheesecake.
I was half into the first 10 or 15 minutes of Anyone But You (mostly occurring in a Starbucks-like outlet) but despised the remainder top to bottom.