A Greek man and Lebanese woman risk their families for their love in this funny Australian film that will remind viewers of a certain indie film that still holds as one of the best romantic comedies in recent times.
Alex Karrostopoulos is a Greek Orthodox math teacher who has been unlucky in love and yet, he is pressured by his family to get married. When his buddy Paul plans to set him up with the friend of his friend with benefits, Alex is at first reluctant. That is, until he meets Eve, a lawyer who is of Lebanese Muslim origin. Her parents expect her to marry fellow Muslim Mohamad. However, both Eve and Alex do know one thing: they do not want to be rushed into marriage or possibly even get married.
At first, things are a bit tense between the two due to their religious backgrounds. However, the two soon begin to get closer and it eventually leads to a romance between the two. When their parents find out what’s happened between the two, their parents refuse to allow the romance to continue. To make matters worse, Mohamad has arrived and intends to marry Eve. When Alex finally realizes how much Eve means to him, he will go to great lengths to make sure despite all obstacles, keep the flame and spark between him and Eve going no matter what it takes.
Romantic comedies may seem like a dime a dozen and there have been plenty with the same old boring plot, normally those seen in the Hallmark or Lifetime holiday film. We know the formula: girl meets boy, they can’t stand each other, they eventually stand each other and fall in love. When 2003’s My Big Fat Greek Wedding came out, it changed up quite a lot with the story of a Greek woman whose romance with a non-Greek man and its chemistry and comedy were the highlight of the film. This Australia film, based on a hit stage play, had to have been inspired from that film because this is almost on that same level of sheer hilarity and chaos.
The driving force of the film comes in the titular characters, played wonderfully by former Power Ranger Richard Bracantisano and Andrea Demetriades. When these two appear together on screen for the first time, of course it’s a comical scene that involves them accidentally vying for the same seat at a local bar. This is only the beginning as their romance soon blossoms and where in My Big Fat Greek Wedding, we saw more of one family’s reaction, we get the double dose of maniacal reactions from both Alex’s overbearing father, played by Tony Nikolakopoulos and Eve’s persistent mother, played by Helen Chebatte. Alex Lykos, who not only wrote the screenplay based on his original stage play. Makes the most of his screen time as Stavros, Alex’s brother who seems to have the perfect family and only wants Alex to live the same life.
There are some very funny moments as well as it pertains to Alex’s students, notably the outspoken Chris, played by Nathan Melki; and Mandy, played by Emma-Jane MacKinnon-Lee, who are in a relationship similar to the one we see in Alex and Eve with both coming from different backgrounds. However, while Chris and Mandy seem to be both loudmouths, Chloe Condylis’ Rima and Katerine-Ann MacKinnon-Lee’s Sarah tends to be more calm and collected duo who attempt to help Alex out of his little problem while there is a bit of a subplot involving Alex’s friend Paul, played by Ryan O’Kane and Eve’s friend Clare, played by Millie Samuels, who are in a more “friends with benefits” relationship with the latter wanting more than just that.
If you are a fan of the My Big Fat Greek Wedding films, then you will enjoy Alex & Eve thanks to the chemistry of the titular characters and the hilarity that happens with the relationship, especially from both families involved. A funny film from Down Under worth checking out.
WFG RATING: A-
A Shoreline Entertainment/Magic Box Productions film. Director: Peter Andrikidis. Producer: Murray Fahey. Writer: Alex Lykos. Cinematography: Joseph Pickering. Editing: Neil Thumpston.
Cast: Richard Bracantisano, Andrea Demetriades, Ryan O’Kane, Millie Samuels, Tony Nikalakopoulos, Zoe Carides, Helen Chebatte, Simon Elrahi, Hazem Shammas, Alex Lykos, Rahel Romahn, Nathan Melki, Chloe Condylis, Katerine-Ann MacKinnon-Lee, Emma-Jane MacKinnon-Lee.