Film Review – On The Rocks

On The Rocks (M)

Directed by: Sofia Coppola

Starring: Rashida Jones, Bill Murray, Marlon Wayans

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Review by: Julian Wright

Arthouse darling Sofia Coppola takes a broody marriage drama and spices it up with a father-daughter caper twist in her latest On The Rocks.

After their fairy-tale wedding, New York author and mum of two Laura (Rashida Jones) is plagued with suspicions that her workaholic husband Dean (Marlon Wayans) is cheating on her with his attractive new staff member.

When Laura expresses her concerns to her charming and philandering father Felix (Bill Murray), he takes the news with glee and suggests they stalk Dean around New York and Mexico to catch him in the act.

On the scale of Lost In Translation to The Bling Ring, On The Rocks tends to lean slightly towards the Hollywood Hills heist side. Not enough resonant substance to cement itself as one Coppola’s most memorable or best, but also not completely devoid of moments of insight and charm.

While dealing with the potential of a broken marriage and the relationship between father and daughter, this film serves as a love letter to a side of New York that we never see on screen – it is peaceful, charming and almost feels like a small town or an unpopulated part of an Italian city.

Murray does what Murray does best and Coppola just lets him go, and yet the chemistry between him and Jones is what highlights this dramedy. The film as a whole may not be one of Coppola’s best but the two leads together are a joy to be in company with.

Jones herself proves her dramatic acting chops, her face long and her shoulders carrying the weight of her character’s deeply troubled thoughts. It is a side of her we have not yet seen and one that deserves more screen time.

A breezy time with enjoyable banter between a couple of charming leads, On The Rocks is more about providing giggles than digging deep into the relationships it sets up.

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