Love Type D

***

Reviewed by: Amber Wilkinson

Love Type D
"At once a light satire on the perils of modern dating.. and an enjoyably absurd nod to more old-fashioned humour, writer/director Collington gets away with a lot because of the sheer energy on display." | Photo: Courtesy of EIFF

What if the reason you were unlucky in love was down to genetics? Frankie (Maeve Dermody) is certainly open to the suggestion after she is dumped (yet again), this time receiving her pain by proxy as Wilbur (Rory Stroud), the 11-year-old brother of her latest squeeze Thomas (Oliver Farnworth), delivers the news at a restaurant. Wilbur reckons scientists have discovered once you're a "dumpee" there's no going back - and there's a test to prove it.

Needless to say the heroine of Sasha Collington's bright and breezy debut comedy is up for finding out, soon roping in her hapless crew of office colleagues to also give it a go. The biggest problem is that, according to Wilbur, the solution to their lovelorn malaise is to go back out with everyone they've ever dated - alive or dead - and dump them instead.

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At once a light satire on the perils of modern dating, where your replacement can be found at the click of a Facebook link, and an enjoyably absurd nod to more old-fashioned humour, writer/director Collington gets away with a lot because of the sheer energy on display. Key to this is Stroud, who brings a pleasing Ealing schoolboy vibe to the bookish Wilbur, riffing off Dermody's quietly desperate Frankie with the sort of timing an actor twice his age would be proud of.

Although the set-up threatens to stray into teenage TV drama in places - albeit of the well-made variety - Collington's high concept plus strong performances mean she avoids a lot of the usual romcom cliches. Some of the subsidiary characterisation could do with more work, especially Frankie's office colleagues, who all too identifiable by type rather than personality, but the pacing means you don't have long to dwell.

Unlike many films of this ilk that pretend to break the rules before grabbing them in a bear hug by the end - including Modern Life Is Rubbish, which also had its premiere at Edinburgh a couple of years ago - Collington stands by Frankie. Not everything may go right for her heroine but, despite what Frankie might think of her life, she's never less than the boss here, proving to be surprisingly Machiavellian when the opportunity arises. The laugh-rate is also high, whether its the visual gags, such as the checklist given to those being tested for the "dumpee" gene ("Have you ever played Scrabble alone?") or a sequence in which Frankie puts an attraction pheromone to the test. Whatever your type, it's well worth a look.

Reviewed on: 26 Jun 2019
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A woman who believes she has a 'loser in love gene' goes on the hunt of her exes in a bid to change her romantic future.

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