Romantic comedies are the fairy tales of current times. There is always the beautiful “princess” in distress and a handsome “prince” to the rescue. Sometimes the situation is reversed, the princess gets to rescue the prince. Often, either of them is in disguise to make it a not-so-unexpected surprise towards the end that the unlikely pair actually ends up together.
Don’t expect a very realistic story line or ending. This type of movies exist to cater to the fantasies of every romantic at heart. Once in a while a movie comes up with a realistic story or dialogue or a totally unexpected ending, but these tend to be the exception.
The movie New In Town starring Renee Zellweger and Harry Connick Jr. belongs to this genre. Renee as Lucy is a successful careerwoman outmaneouvred by her male rivals to be assigned to the wintry boondocks of Minesotta. Harry is Ted who at first sight rubbed Lucy the wrong way. The charm here lay in the small town characteristics of the residents of New Ulm wherein the proudly self-proclaimed city girl Lucy stuck out like a sore thumb.
Director Jonas Elmer had the formula down pat wherein the conflicts for the outsider eventually melt away when she learns to love the people and the place. Lucy portrays the empowered woman of today who is the winning problem-solver, improbably finding a solution to each and every problem that arises. There were a few lightly amusing touches sprinkled now and then.
If there is one word to describe this rom-com, it’s charming. Thus, it achieves its objective to make the viewer feel good. Nothing quite new here, but shall I say, mission accomplished?