Starring: Geraldine Viswanathan, Dacre Montgomery, Utkarsh Ambudkar
Director: Natalie Krinsky
Running Time: 108 mins
The Broken Hearts Gallery is an American film about a young woman who collects objects from her past relationships, and decides to set up a gallery celebrating them and those of other people who remember their past loves and need to let go.
For the most part a fluffy, easy-going romantic comedy, The Broken Hearts Gallery is a really lovely watch from start to finish. With energetic pacing, good humour and a wonderful lead performance from Geraldine Viswanathan, it’s a film to really make you smile, even if it doesn’t necessarily exploit the full dramatic potential of its story.
Even if you are averse to the romantic comedy, or prefer your love stories with a tinge more real-world cynicism, The Broken Hearts Gallery is one of those movies that even the biggest pessimists won’t be able to resist.
A lot of that has to do with the lead performance from Geraldine Viswanathan, who is outstanding in this film. Although she starts off by overplaying the quirky, clumsy type, she soon finds her feet as an ambitious, optimistic and delightfully energetic lead, bringing such a strong sense of joy to the whole film.
Without Viswanathan, The Broken Hearts Gallery could have been a rather flat, monotonous romantic comedy, but thanks to her scene-stealing joyful energy, I found myself beaming ear to ear on a number of occasions here.
The film’s screenplay isn’t quite as magical, though it certainly goes all out to replicate the enthusiasm of its lead actress. Following the story of finding something positive out of heartbreak, this movie is so full of uplifting and happy energy, complete with delightful comedy and even the odd bit of genuinely heartwarming romance to boot.
Of course, the central love story is entirely predictable at every beat, but although that does mean the movie loses a certain emotional effect, its fluffy nature makes it a light-hearted joy to watch throughout.
Where The Broken Hearts Gallery does unfortunately miss the mark, however, is in its focus on the deeper, long-lasting impact of relationships. Beyond the immediate trauma of going through a breakup, the story touches briefly on how people hang onto the memories – physical or not – of their past loves for a long, long time.
It’s a wonderful idea to bring up, and an enjoyably sentimental one too, but the film doesn’t go further and offer up an emotionally captivating portrayal of people who are still so wrapped up in their previous romances. It’s a quirky feature of the movie, but it could have been much more.
Overall, I rather liked The Broken Hearts Gallery. It may be a fluffy, easy-going romantic comedy, but thanks to an enjoyable story, good humour, an optimistic mindset and a dynamite lead performance, it’s an effortlessly enjoyable and gratifying watch, so that’s why I’m giving it a 7.3 overall.