Movie review: ‘Imagine Me and You'

Minority GroupsPiper PeraboLena HeadeyEntertainmentMatthew GoodeWoody AllenAnthony Head

Hot on the heels of "Brokeback Mountain"--with timing forcing unfortunate comparison--comes "Imagine Me & You," a London-set would-be comedy about the love between a bride and her female florist.

Piper Perabo, she of "Coyote Ugly" infamy, plays Rachel, a well-coifed, smiley Brit about to marry her dandy sweetheart, Heck (Matthew Goode). With hair swept up in a fat, Sarah Jessica Parker-style bun, Rachel saunters down the aisle to her beloved when--bam!--she locks eyes with her florist, Luce (Lena Headey, from Terry Gilliam's "The Brothers Grimm" ), and it's love at first sight.

Or is it?

This question--whether love at first sight is even possible--fills the duration of first-time writer/director Ol Parker's romantic comedy, but the query isn't earnest.

Movies like this live and breathe by the absolute truth of meet-cute, with the weight of having to explain or show the development of true love relegated to longer, more ponderous arthouse flicks.

Rachel and Heck get married and carry on with their comfortable existence, but now Luce is a part of it, having somehow become entrenched in the couple's inner-circle overnight. Rachel doesn't have to go all cloak-and-dagger to see her lesbian love, she just shows up at any family gathering and Luce is there, hanging out with the fam.

If this all seems way too easy, so does the way Rachel deals with her newfound sexual attraction. Sure, she's torn up about it, but mostly because she's lying to Heck, an all-around good guy and handsome chap. (Comparisons to Hugh Grant already drawn, let me just say that the dry-witted Goode, a charmer in Woody Allen's "Match Point," is about to become your new favorite actor.)

In the real world, where florists don't slow-dance on the job and there simply isn't time to ponder the soul mate conundrum at every turn, Rachel just might have a small to medium (to enormous) identity crisis, what with marrying her long-time love only to instantly fall for another ..... woman. (Perabo may have smooched some female drink-slingers on the bar way back when, and most certainly did as a lesbian schoolgirl in 2001's erotic, campy romance "Lost and Delirious," but Rachel has not.)

Instead, our leading ladies smirk, flirt and make puppy-dog eyes at each other until this whole love triangle thing is resolved, with The Big Question answered by a happy-go-lucky Turtle's tune. The only one for me is you, and you for me. So happy together…..I guess there's something progressive going on when a lesbian love story gets to be just as dreadful and tacky as most straight ones. In the words of my wedding florist: Mazel tov!

abenedikt@tribune.com

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`Imagine Me and You'

Written and directed by Ol Parker; photographed by Ben V. Davis; edited by Alex Mackie; production designed by Eve Mavrakis; music by Alex Heffes; produced by Sophie Balhetchet, Barnaby Thompson and Andro Steinborn. A Fox Searchlight Pictures release; opens Friday. Running time: 1:33. MPAA rating: R (some language and sexual material).

Rachel - Piper Perabo

Luce - Lena Headey

Heck - Matthew Goode

Ned - Anthony Head

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Minority GroupsPiper PeraboLena HeadeyEntertainmentMatthew GoodeWoody AllenAnthony Head
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