Not Another Happy Ending
Jumping out of the role of Pond and into a fairly inconsequential rom-com, Doctor Who actress Karen Gillan fails to bring anything more than a magnificently understated, retro wardrobe to the silver screen in John McKay’s Not Another Happy Ending. Set in modern day Glasgow, the story unfolds around the whimsical Jane Lockhart (Gillan), an up-and-coming author, as she opens yet another depressing letter from a publishing house refusing to print her book. Rejection is the story of Jane’s life.
After a change of fate, Jane is brought to publisher Tom Duval (Stanley Weber, Trap for Cinderella), a handsome French-Scot who decides to take a punt on Jane’s novel and forges a two-book contract with her. The following months see the protagonists grow closer, until out of the blue Tom betrays Jane’s trust by changing the title of her book. For a woman who is emotionally unbalanced and seems to revel in her own unhappy past, the highly emotive title change is the cherry on the cake. Jane and Tom agree to go their separate ways once the second book is complete – and therein lies their problem. Jane, with one final chapter to go, has writer’s block.
The vast majority of the film is dedicated to Tom and his good friend Roddy’s (Iain De Caestecker) attempts to unblock Jane. Their efforts are spent trying to make Jane unhappy as they feel it is her new found happiness and success that has halted her creative flow. The men’s endeavours are feeble at the best of times, and unfortunately fail to create any real sense of “com” in this rom-com. Furthermore, Jane and Tom do not make a convincing couple: if there is any chemistry between them it is not successfully translated onto the screen, and as individuals they have only fleeting moments of charisma.
With the film constantly nodding towards an exaggerated, bohemian lifestyle, there isn’t much that the audience will be able to relate to. Not Another Happy Ending’s saving grace is its tender naivety and ability to laugh at its own clichés.
Although this film will struggle to stay afloat among more famed British rom-coms, it is unique in its own capriciousness and will no doubt strike the right chord with a few fans of the genre.
Not Another Happy Ending is released in the UK on 11th October 2013.
Watch the trailer for Not Another Happy Ending here: