Controversial and a hot topic for more than one reason, Anyone But You is the romance movie that its star says would make rom-coms great again. Perhaps it will, but at the same time, this one isn’t quite there yet.

Anyone But You (2023) Film Review

A chance encounter in a coffee shop during which Ben (Glen Powell) claims Bea (Sydney Sweeney) as his wife (trust me, it’s cute), the pair share an amazing first date. They walk, talk and make grilled cheese sandwiches before falling asleep on the couch. It’s perfect. But nervous of messing things up and worried about the relationship she may be in, Bea walks away only to return just in time to hear Ben say something that, well, hurts her.

A few months later, they enter each other’s orbit again when they find out that Bea is the sister of Ben’s best friend’s girlfriend. Then, despite their mutual hatred, Ben because he thinks Bea ran away, they must again make nice when their mutual connection decides to marry!

This film dripped with controversy first for its rumors of real-life romance (which also meant an affair since Sweeney has a fiancé), then with its reviews. Some didn’t like the film that still put up relatively decent numbers and has high viewer ratings, too. While there is good and fun to find in this comedy, it’s also not the rom-com we deserve. Something I understand is hard to define.

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‘ANYONE BUT YOU’ ISN’T THE ROM-COM WE DESERVE. Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell co-star in comedy. © RissiWrites.com

All of this I say understanding that this era is vastly different. People don’t like jokes anymore or they cannot take one. This generation relates to culture differently than prior generations. They are, as is every generation, different. Nonetheless, while I think some of this is, surprisingly, good, it’s also needlessly ridiculous. It reverts, most of the time, to nude gags for its comedy, and does so comfortably because, well, I would assume culture seems to be comfortable with this. They also know they can because the film was aiming for that R-rating. Either way, I think it’s sad that culture, through multiple generations, is being told some of this behavior is celebration worthy. The whole hating-each-other reasons is also exceptionally petty.

Lest you think otherwise I did enjoy some things about Anyone But You. The concept is familiar but still fun (we love a good fauxmance!). I also love the leads. I think Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell are good together albeit also the current “it” stars. They prove they can do romance, and do it well, which is why this film gets away with moments. I also think Powell already proves this from his Netflix romance in the past. They share some, surprisingly, sweet moments including the first date and later, the whole reconciliation bit, too. It’s these where the film does shine.

In the end, while I would rewatch this, I don’t think this is the romance movie we deserve. It lacks that feeling that so many of the best in this genre have. Of course we all view what makes a good rom-com differently, but I think the warmth of a good movie is universal. If you aren’t bothered by romance movies that push content to earn an R-rating, you’ll probably love this flick. It has that fun concept any rom-com needs and could be part of the starting point for future rom-coms that do get, almost, everything right.

You can stream Anyone But You on Netflix, at publication


‘ANYONE BUT YOU’ ISN’T THE ROM-COM WE DESERVE. Sydney Sweeney and Glen Powell co-star in comedy. © RissiWrites.com

Content: for attention, a couple feel each other’s butts up. They both stick their hand into the back their pants and feel around. Someone smacks a man in his privates; and he strips down to nothing when something is crawling in his pants. He covers his privates but we do see a full nude shot from behind. Front and back nudity; we see front female nudity twice. A couple has sex, we see them showering (nudity) and then tangled in each other (nude) and in sheets. There’s a looks-like-having-sex gag played when a sleeve gets stuck, and the woman tries to pull it out. Women walk around in barely there bikinis. One romantic couple is same sex, and we see a few kisses between them. There’s other sexual comments. The c-word is present, and f-word heavily features (I muted them but the filter says 50-some) several times. There is also the use of sh*t and other more PG-13 profanity. The film rates R.

Photos: Columbia Pictures

About Rissi JC

amateur graphic designer. confirmed bookaholic. bubbl’r enthusiast. critical thinker. miswesterner. social media coordinator. writer.


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