Friday, March 3, 2023

Ticket to Paradise (2022)

Streaming Service: Peacock
Movie Name/Year:  Ticket to Paradise (2022)
Genre: Comedy, Romance
Length:  1h 44min
Rating: PG-13
Production/Distribution: Universal Pictures, Working Title Films, Smokehouse Pictures, Red Om Films, United International Pictures (UIP), Universal Pictures International (UPI), Universal Pictures Home Entertainment (UPHE), Peacock
Director: Ol Parker
Writers: Ol Parker, Daniel Pipski
Actors: Julia Roberts, George Clooney, Kaitlyn Dever, Lucas Bravo, Agung Pindha, Amanda O'Dempsey, Cintya Dharmayanti, Genevieve Lemon, Ifa Barry, Ilma Nurfauziah,  Maxime Bouttier, Murran Kain, Romy Poulier, Rowan Chapman, Sean Lynch, Senayt Mebrahtu, Talha Şentürk, Vanesa Everett
IMDb Blurb: A divorced couple that teams up and travels to Bali to stop their daughter from making the same mistake they think they made 25 years ago.

Cat’s Point of View:
The trailer for Ticket to Paradise promised a fun rom-com full of laughter, face-palming, and gorgeous scenery. Check, check, and check. Selina and I both listed this film on our Top 20 list for movies releasing in October 2022, and my only regret is that I didn’t place it higher than #18. 

We wondered why George Clooney (Gravity, Money Monster, The Midnight Sky) picked Ticket to Paradise as a return to rom-coms after swearing off of them, and I think I have the answer. Of course, this is purely conjecture, but I’m pretty sure that it was a combination of a good script and the chance to have a blast with one of his good friends, Julia Roberts (August: Osage County, Wonder, Homecoming). You could just tell that they had an amazing time making this movie. I would have loved to be on that set, watching hilarity ensue. Seriously, though - for every good take, think of how many insanely funny ones hit the cutting room floor.
The romance story of the young couple was sweet, but the real focus of Ticket to Paradise was the journey of the parents. I connected to the narrative here on so many levels. I married young and a guy that I’d met on the internet, at that. Keep in mind, that was before things like dating apps existed. It was scandalous and my parents were pretty convinced I was making a mistake at the beginning. Thankfully, my parents divorced amicably and remained friendly so no other parallels to this story occurred. I digress… They didn’t want me to repeat any of the mistakes of their youth, either. (Thankfully, they didn’t view their marriage as one of them.)

On the other hand, as a mother of a 19-year-old, I find myself worrying about my own daughter’s choices and her future. I can understand the desire to go through the lengths the parents in the movie do to accomplish what they felt was protection for their only child. 

Let’s face it, rom-coms have a recipe and Ticket to Paradise didn’t deviate from it. Everything was predictable - and we can even see foreshadowing in the movie poster of all places, as well as laced throughout the trailer. There were no surprises here. You know what? I didn’t care. I loved every minute of it. I enjoyed the entertainment value and the heart behind it. I am glad the cast had a great time making this film that offers a chance for a few minutes of sharing that paradise while the rest of the world is in the midst of a dumpster fire. The critics just need to lay off. 
As a bonus, I enjoyed learning about Balinese wedding customs!  While the production was filmed in Australia, the story's setting was Indonesia. I sincerely hope that detailed research and accuracy was applied to that portion of the movie.

If you get a chance to catch Ticket to Paradise on Peacock or any other means, I would not hesitate to recommend it. Check it out and hopefully you’ll enjoy the trip, too.
Rotten Tomatoes Critic Score – 57%
Rotten Tomatoes Audience Score – 87%
Metascore – 50%
Metacritic User Score – 4.6/10
IMDB Score – 6.2/10
Trust the Dice: Cat’s Rating – 4/5

P.S. - There are a few brief bloopers and outtakes shown during the beginning of the end credits.
Movie Trailer:

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