Review: ‘Married/Unmarried’

Two couples, one recently hitched, the other "courting," gab, spat, shag and gab again in "Married/Unmarried," a faux-cool examination of contempo relationships that's as shallow as the characters onscreen. Low-budget directorial debut of mono-monikered legit writer Noli took three years to get a very limited release May 7 in Blighty and looked to disappear instantaneously.

Two couples, one recently hitched, the other “courting,” gab, spat, shag and gab again in “Married/Unmarried,” a faux-cool examination of contempo relationships that’s as shallow as the characters onscreen. Low-budget directorial debut of mono-monikered legit writer Noli, here adapting one of his own (unstaged) plays, took three years to get a very limited release May 7 in Blighty and looked to disappear instantaneously.

While having a post-coital bath, Paul (Paolo Seganti) casually mentions to wife Amanda (Gina Bellman) that he just saw an ex-g.f. (Lidija Zovkic) in a TV yogurt commercial, sparking a torrent of jealous questioning by Amanda. Meanwhile, Paul’s buddy, icy control freak Danny (Ben Daniels), meets Kim (Kristen McMenamy) in a nightclub, and the two enter into a curious S&M relationship. A late-on twist tying the two couples together is as unbelievable as the characters themselves — especially the attraction between Danny and Kim, and friendship between Paul and Danny — and pic’s sexual detail is either gratuitous or laughable. Aside from Bellman, cast is OK, and blowup from Super-16 good, showcasing Paul Sadourian’s designer-color lensing. French actor Denis Lavant cameos as a street weirdo.

Married/Unmarried

U.K.

Production

A Guerilla Films release of a Fusion Intl. Sales presentation of a Meltemi Entertainment, the Spice Factory production, in association with Great British Films, Enterprise Films. Produced by Jonathan English, Kimberley Barnes, Michael Lionello Cowan, Jason Piette. Executive producers, David Rogers, Alex Marshall. Directed, written by Noli.

Crew

Camera (color), Paul Sadourian; editor, Martin Brinkler; music, Mark Ryder, C.P. Olins; production designer, Rachel Payne, costume designer, Suzie Harman. Reviewed at Mr. Young's preview theater, London, March 26, 2004. Running time: 100 MIN.

With

Paolo Seganti, Ben Daniels, Gina Bellman, Kristen McMenamy, Denis Lavant, Lidija Zovkic.
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