Full disclosure — I decided to see this movie in the hope it would be atrocious. I refused to buy tickets beforehand, a habit my overplanned mind constantly adheres to, simply out of spite. I thought this would be another one of those movies with an empty theatre on opening weekend.
And then the movie theatre turned me away. Sold out.
Mouth open and speechless, I found another theatre offering a showing an hour later. This time, I bought my ticket online.
And proceeded to wait in the longest wait line I have even seen. A security guard calmly explained, “Yes, Theatre Five does in fact have a line ma’am.”
Earning $14.75 million opening weekend, Overboard is full of surprises. A gender-bent remake of the 1987 rom-com Overboard, the film focuses on Kate, a struggling single mother who gets hired to clean the yacht of selfish Mexican playboy Leonardo. After he throws her and her expensive cleaning supplies into the water, she gets revenge on him by basically kidnapping him when he gets amnesia after falling off his yacht.
Kate has a genius, fail-proof plan that goes completely overboard: forge documents, bring Leonardo — now Leo — into her house with her three young children and pretend to be his wife.
Starring fan-favorite Anna Faris (from CBS’ sitcom Mom) and Mexican star Eugenio Derbez, the cast live up to the task. Derbez, who also helped produce the film, plays a large role in shaping the film into a bilingual comedy that had the audience in tears.
Roughly one-third of the dialogue is in Spanish, although the film also includes French speakers, Norwegians and Scots. Shoutout to that amazing Norwegian captain with those cool jams. What a guy.
The funniest part was seeing the stark differences between Leonardo’s billionaire and working class personas. Acting more as an emblem of a self-absorbed, and honestly evil, character in the beginning, Derbez’s remarkably sweet and almost pitiable dad figure is endearing.
There are also some creepy parts… like when Leo tells Kate’s 13-year-old daughter how beautiful she is in order to boost her confidence. In a legitimate father role, it’d be a touching scene. But the overboard gesture just creeped me out big time.
Many of the minor characters in this movie have serious characters flaws and are honestly terrible people. As the film’s title would suggest, the writers went overboard for comedy’s sake. Kate’s mother, who breaks her promise to take care of her grandchildren in order to pursue theatre, is just one example.
However, Leonardo’s ambitious sister, Magda (Cecilia Suárez), is cast as the movie’s true villain. The movie blends female ambition with manipulation, as Magda’s motivator is that her father insists on giving the company to Leonardo solely because he is a man.
Yes, Magda does leave Leonardo in the hospital with amnesia and fake his death in order to be next in line to inherit their ailing father’s company after he dies. While Magda wasn’t the character I rooted for, the “backstory” to her betrayal felt problematic.
My favorite part was the name of Leonardo’s luxury yacht: Birthday Present. One of the film’s endearing qualities is how darn predictable it was. But that yacht sure is important.
All in all, the movie completely blew my expectations out of the water, maybe even overboard. Yes, it is a predictable rom-com whose plot is completely spoiled by its own trailer. And yes, it does have some problematic scenes and characters.
However, with its bilingual focus and gender-bent plot, Overboard might just be a remake worth watching.