Starring Jennifer Aniston, Adam Sandler
Directed by Kyle Newacheck
Rating: **(2 stars)
Cruising along in this corny-going-on-obnoxious takeoff on the Agatha Christie whodunits—there is even a homage to Christie at the film’s end-bend—you get the feeling that the only reason for this film’s existence, and the only reason why we are watching it, is the lead pair.
The very charming Jennifer Aniston and the gloriously goofy Adam Sandler are priceless as a White Trash couple, social climbers who lie to get entrance into elite circles, with a penchant for clinging on to successful people. They get themselves invited on a luxury cruise by a billionaire(Luke Evans) whom they meet in a well-written onflight sequence(with an airhostess with an upperlip so stiff it could give the Bertie Wooster’s butler a run for his money).
There are spells of pleasurably scripted interludes in what’s largely a royal mess, and none more messed up than the ‘Maharaja’ Vikram on board the ship , played by Adeel Akhtar. The Maharaja tries to act cool and drawls drippy dialectic ditzy humour. But all we see is a Brown man being subjected to a ridiculous accent and attitude.
The other characters,are all suspect in a series of murders that happen after the family on cruise loses its patriarch(Terence Stamp) just as he’s about to sign off all his wealth to his sexy young wife.
Gold diggers, disgruntled relatives, illimitable money and flow of champagne to go with it, cannot take away from the dreadful feeling we get of a film wasting talented good looking people in pursuit of a script that would do them justice.
Murder Mystery relies too heavily on Aniston and Sandler’s shared chemistry as a desperately wannabe couple thrown into a world on a ship where they don’t belong.
“I think we should leave,” Aniston suggests to Sandler at one point when the billionaire snubs his family out of the will.
Seriously, leave before the lead pair’s charms wear too thin.