A Kiss for Jed
- Director: Maurice Linnane
- Genre: Romance
- Cert: 15A
- Details: Ireland/US / 86mins .
Now, this could be interesting. Mark O'Halloran can write – no doubt about the talent behind Prosperity, Garage and Adam & Paul – but can he pull off playing the lead in a straight up silly rom-com? Hmmm. Let's see...
O'Halloran plays a middle-aged documentary maker and American Civil War fanatic who can't find work he's skilled for so has to take shite work like following 19-year-old Antrim firecracker Orla (Wisener) around New York. Why? Orla has won some sort of prize on some sort of Irish reality TV show and gets to travel to New York to track down and dog into Country & Western singer Jed Wood (Neal Bledsoe). O'Halloran thinks the job is beneath him but is prepared to give it a go so you can imagine his humour when the flaky Orla wants to shop more than work. But is she exactly what the all-too-serious O'Hallorn needs to light up his dreary world?
Yes, is the short answer to that one. There's no doubt about the outcome despite the age gap, despite the 'obstacles' (she has a thing for the handsome Country singer she's stalking) and despite she's annoying. I mean, really, really annoying. It's not Jayne Wisener's fault as she's probably asked to be this shrill and kudos to her she certainly gives herself to the character: imagine if one of the Bosco presenters got a bit uppity and had notions of themselves. Liking this comedy all depends on how you like her. I didn't.
But then you have O'Halloran grounding everything as best he can. O'Halloran, who has the harder job in being drab yet charming as he squirrels away trying to do decent work in a job he hates. But you're sitting there waiting for him to find what's behind Orla's smile and get to the heart of the girl and nothing comes of it. A Kiss For Jed sticks to its guns and keeps things fluffy.
It's a no-pretensions romantic comedy that you’d see Colin Firth and Jennifer Aniston fop about it in - that's a 'Bridget Jones Bad Jumper Firth' and not a 'A Single Man Sharp Suit Firth' with a Jennifer Aniston In Everything She's In Bar The Good Girl Which She's Quite Good In Jennifer Aniston.
Review by Gavin Burke | 15:51 | Wednesday 16th May 2012 | Movie Review
A Kiss For Jed was at one stage known as A Kiss For Justin, as in Justin Timberlake. Presumably, a cameo from Mr Timberlake would have cost many times the budget of this charming little Irish-American film. World-weary cameraman Ray (Mark O'Halloran) is assigned the task of escorting bubbly reality-TV show winner Orla (Jayne Wisener) to New York. There Orla will work on a video diary, hunting down Country & Western star Jed to get a kiss from him. So far, so simple as they track Jed around the streets of the Big Apple, along with an American sound guy. Then Orla goes off on her own and the mis-matched pair try to get back together again. It's a thin plot which conveniently skips over some non-sequiturs, like how Orla is able to work in a New York restaurant without a work permit. However, the spirited lead performances and the oddball supporting cast are just enough to get the film to the finish line without tripping over. After the dreadful Charlie Casanova last week, A Kiss For Jed does just enough to restore some faith in Irish cinema.Posted 21:24 | Wed 16th May 2012
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