The Valet is the latest addition to Hulu’s rom-com list. Directed by Richard Wong and written by Rob Greenberg and Bob Fisher (who is known for the iconic Wedding Crashers), this upcoming romantic comedy is produced by Eugenio Derbez and Ben Odell under the banner of Pantelion Films and 3Pas Studios. It is based on the 2006 French comedy of the same name by Francis Veber.
The protagonists of the story are Eugenio Derbez as Antonio and Samara Weaving as Olivia Allan. The other cast members include Betsy Brandt, Carmen Salinas, Amaury Nolasco, Marisol Nichols, Diany Rodriguez, Tiana Okoye, John Pirruccello, Ravi Patel, Noemi Gonzalez, Lunay, Max Greenfield, Armando Hernández, Wilmer Calderon, Carlos Santos and Milena Rivero. The movie has a runtime of
– Hulu’s The Valet Review Does Not Contain Spoilers –
The Valet: A Worthy Remake?
Everyone loves the 2006 film by Francis Veber. It is funny, classy and just the kind of rom-com we were all banking on back in the early 2000s to help us get rid of all our blues in life. So, was it worth it? Is the remake well aligned with the thoughts and ideas of the present day and time? And, most importantly is it a worthy remake? It is a conflicted call because yes for ideas of racial and social divides but, no for the script actually lacks one of the most important elements that elevate this film- comedy.
The film tells the story of Antonio, a parking valet of the Beverly Hills restaurant, who uninvitingly becomes entangled in an affair between the Hollywood sensation Olivia Allan and her real estate tycoon boyfriend Vincent Royce, who is married. To hide her relationship with Vincent before the release of her big movie, Olivia ropes in Antonio to pose as her boyfriend. But, what starts the iconic ‘fake lovers’ relationship develops into sweeter tasting water of life.
On the surface, The Valet does not juggle much with its quintessential subplot where the out of the league girl lands with a seemingly ordinary guy, much like Notting Hill. However, suiting the temperament of the present generation, it does not go-ahead to set unrealistic standards. As the relationship between Antonio and Olivia develops the process looks slow, and thoughtful and gives both the characters space to think and figure out their surroundings, giving it a platonic romantic comedy turn.
Much like its predecessor, another thing this film does impeccably is shed light on the class and social differences that exist in our society as well as the image we perceive of others when we associate them with a certain societal divide. We see the popular Olivia lonely, the welcoming Antonio mistreated and all because of the heavy societal boundary that cages them in certain corners of the world. From handlers to valets, the film takes a step to bring to light how the rich and elite only function because these people make their lives easier.
Yet with all the praises, there are moments when The Valet just does not click. For instance, the apparent age difference between Eugenio Derbez and Samara Weaving, which kind of makes it hard for you to root for the couple even though there is a sufficient build-up, from friendship to romance, in their relationship. So for the most part, the romance does not seem to work. This is not helped by the weak comedy script that does not hold up.
The Valet: Final Verdict
Overall, The Valet seems keener on being a social drama set against the backdrop of an iconic romantic trope than a romantic comedy that deals with the social issues in the world. Being the former, it hits all the right chords but, because this film has been essentially marketed as a romantic comedy, it will disappoint you if you are up for Hollywood era romance. It has the makings of being a quality rom-com with good direction and talented actors but, the script and the unfathomable chemistry between the main characters is what makes this boat sink. However, given all the previous romantic comedy releases by Hulu, this is by far the best one.
You can watch The Valet now on Hulu.Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.