Review: "Meet Cute"
The idea of time travel, or getting stuck (in this case, purposefully) in a time loop, has become a popular concept in recent times, and Groundhog Day is the ever-present reference. Meet Cute might even be poking fun at its '90s-era predecessor when Sheila suggests it would be "creepy" if she were returning repeatedly to the same night with Gary in order to win him over, precisely Bill Murray's intentions in the earlier film. Instead, Sheila is repeating the same night as a lifeline, because it's the only thing stopping her from killing herself, giving this film a much darker undertone.
That mood is matched in the film's late-night urban ambiance and Davidson's Gary, who is coping with the results of an unhappy childhood. But Meet Cute also aims for a humorous tone at moments, shifts the actors manage well. Davidson is mostly reactive to Cuoco's Sheila, who swerves between manic and depressed, but he carries an emotional final scene. Craig is also engaging as the droll June.
Oddly, this is the second movie of the season (following Mack & Rita) where a tanning bed serves as a conduit to a different place. Sheila has to kill her "other" self in order to keep coming back -- one of several unexplained aspects of how the time travel works and what can be done and undone in the past. When Gary takes matters into his own hands, it's better to just stop asking questions of the script and focus on the relationship, which leaves the film's enjoyment factor mostly up to how appealing you find Cuoco and Davidson.
Read the full review at Common Sense Media.
Image courtesy of Peacock.