New to stream on Netflix is the romantic comedy, A Tourist’s Guide to Love. The movie – directed by Steven K. Tsuchida – stars Rachael Leigh Cook, Scott Ly, and Missi Pyle, and follows the story of a tour operator, who travels to Vietnam following a break-up.
In the movie, Amanda Riley has been in a relationship for five years, when her boyfriend suddenly announces he has been offered a new position at work, which will require him to relocate. Only problem is, Amanda doesn’t factor into this relocation and this ends their once harmonious relationship.
Upset over the situation, Amanda takes a trip to Vietnam to get away from things. The trip is work-related, with Amanda taking the opportunity to do some research for her job in the tourism industry, but for now she is looking forward to spending sometime soaking up the culture of a new country.
Upon arrival in Vietnam, Amanda meets tour guide, Sinh Thach, who she instantly shares a connection with. The pair become close, and soon love starts to blossom.
Light, frothy, and occasionally amusing, A Tourist’s Guide to Love is an easy-to-watch rom-com, about finding love in unexpected places. The film is a story about one woman’s journey to regain happiness, following a (very brief) period of upset, with the focus placed on her discovering new possibilities that exist outside of her day-to-day life.
Filmed against a very picturesque backdrop, and featuring a bunch of good-looking actors, all existing in a world where nothing bad happens, A Tourist’s Guide to Love is a fairly generic romantic comedy which does exactly what it says on the tin. It takes no risks, does nothing imaginative, and across its 90-minute runtime it plays out entirely as expected.
However, despite its shortcomings and limited story, A Tourist’s Guide to Love offers perfectly acceptable viewing. Admittedly, it is mostly ‘background viewing’ (something you stick on while doing something else), but it is entirely watchable.
No one streaming A Tourist’s Guide to Love will be under any illusion that this is going to be the next Notting Hill, but if light romantic movies with no element of risk or danger are your thing, then it may hit the spot. Within two-minutes of pressing play you’ll know what you’re in for, and you’ll have a good feel for the scope and scale of the drama moving forward.
Racheal Leigh Cook provides a fine, reliable lead as Amanda, and knows this part inside out. The role doesn’t appear particularly challenging for her, but her performance fits the tone of the picture fine.
Joining Cook is Scott Ly, who takes on the part of love-interest Sinh Thach. Ly proves to be a likeable suitor, and a handsome one too, and paired with Cook they share some decent chemistry.
Everyone else in the movie is instantly forgettable, even the ever-dependable Missi Pyle who is relegated to a minor role as Amanda’s boss, but the focus here really is on the lead couple. Director Steven K. Tsuchida knows these two characters are all anyone is going to be interested in, so why worry about anyone else?
Chuck in some delightful shots of the landscape, an occasional sprinkling of light humour, and a good-natured atmosphere, and with the Cook/Ly partnership A Tourist’s Guide to Love just about hangs together OK. Ultimately the film’s sunny disposition and positive outlook is what truly carries it over the line, but hey, it gets there regardless.
A Tourist’s Guide to Love is nothing special, nor is it amazing, and I doubt very much it will stand the test of time, but it is inoffensive stuff. Like many films and shows on Netflix, I expect it will come and go very quickly, eventually getting lost amongst the algorithm, but it may provide some entertainment while it is around.
This film isn’t for me, but it may be for you, if fluffy rom-coms are your thing. Stick it on while you’re cooking dinner or doing the ironing, and it may help pass the time.
Thank you for taking the time to read this review on It’s A Stampede!. For more reviews, check out the recommended reads below.
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