Why you won’t be loving ‘Falling Inn Love’ anytime soon


Jacqueline Barba

Netflix’s latest attempt at a romance movie falls flat on its face.

‘“Falling Inn Love,” Netflix’s latest original romance movie, is guaranteed to make watchers weep   — from disgust. Set primarily in New Zealand, the movie follows one hardworking, young woman’s quest to renovate a dilapidated, old inn with some help from the resident attractive contractor in town. Its predictability and unoriginality will leave viewers reeling with distaste. Chock-full of clichés, awkward dialogue and lackluster acting, “Falling Inn Love” is the perfect movie to watch if you’d like to cringe for one hour and 38 minutes.

The movie’s primary concept lends itself to romance. The main character, Gabriela, played by Christina Milian, finds herself unsatisfied with her life in San Francisco, stuck on the “corporate hamster wheel” while dating a man with commitment issues.

After losing her job and breaking up with her boyfriend, Gabriela decides to enter a competition to win an idyllic inn somewhere in rural New Zealand. She wins the inn, and finds to her dismay that the place is in disarray, at which point she embarks on renovating it with the help of Jake, played by Adam Demos, “the best contractor on the North Island.” 

A love story predictably ensues between Gabriela and Jake, as does every other plotline in the film. Besides the main plot of the story being predictable, even small scenes are predictable, too. 

Much of the movie is made up of commonplace tropes, such as various pieces of the inn breaking when Gabriela tries to fix them, or Jake saving Gabriela from falling and consequently pulling her in just close enough to realize he’d like to kiss her. 

Worst of all, this film has a knack for continuously using upbeat music that didn’t add to the storyline but rather took away from it. By using cheesy pop music in tandem with dialogue that was intended to be meaningful to the viewer, the message was simultaneously lost and squandered. 

Various tropes combine with lackluster dialogue to produce cringe-worthy jokes. The comedy is intended to be quirky, often centered around the eccentricities of the small-town residents Gabriela comes into contact with. While I can only hope these jokes were well-intentioned, they fall flat again and again throughout the movie. 

The highlights of this movie were twofold. Throughout the film, there was a sprinkling of resplendent aerial views of New Zealand throughout the film that added to the overall aesthetic pleasantries of the film. The setting and location of every scene had a clear appreciation for beauty that encouraged the viewer to grow attached to both the inn and the fictional town within the movie. 

Moreover, I enjoyed some efforts at diversifying the cast. Besides the main character herself, there was a variety of other cast members of color. Even more delightful was the casting of Celeste Osterman, a woman with Down Syndrome. Though she only said a few lines, it was nice to see Netflix attempting to differ from the usual homogeneous casting. 

This does not make up for the fact that the movie itself was horrible.

Because there were various points throughout this movie that made me feel second-hand awkwardness, I wouldn’t recommend this movie to anyone looking for a well written and innovatory romance film. It is wholly a cliche romance movie that gives no pretenses of sophistication. Solely for its efforts to make a diverse cast and the visual allure of some of the settings, I give this movie one out of five stars.