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Can You Keep A Secret

Opening Date
19 Sep 2019
M18 Sexual References and Scenes
95 mins
English - subtitles to be advised
Comedy, Romance
Elise Durán
Alexandra Daddario, Tyler Hoechlin, Laverne Cox, Kimiko Glenn, Sunita Mani
Based on the New York Times Bestseller by Sophie Kinsella (Confessions of a Shopaholic) comes the new film CAN YOU KEEP A SECRET.  Thinking they're about to crash, Emma (Alexandra Daddario) spills her secrets to a stranger on a plane. At least, she thought he was a stranger...Until she later meets Jack  (Tyler Hoechlin), her company's young CEO, who now knows every humiliating detail about her…
By Freddy  20 Sep 2019
With the right expectations, Can You Keep A Secret? is a charming enough romp for romantic-comedy fans to like.
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It is tempting to label Can You Keep A Secret? as just another romantic comedy. It still starts with a meet-cute followed by a misunderstanding which ends with a grand gesture. Some of those scenes do get a little cringeworthy. The protagonists sometimes make illogical choices just because the plot demands it.

It remains enjoyable mainly thanks to the infectious charm of Alexandra Daddario, who plays the female lead, Emma Corrigan. She acts opposite Tyler Hoechlin, who plays Emma’s boss Jack Harper. Hoechlin manages to juggle the charm and coldness that his character requires. Their chemistry together is believable enough for us to root for them, although that responsibility falls mostly on Daddario’s lap.

A refreshing aspect of the film is its willingness to expand our view of Emma’s life outside of her love life. Rom-coms tend to keep the leads’ lives and social circle very lean so that they can focus on the romance. But this film introduces us to Emma’s roommates Lissy (Sunita Mani) and Gemma (Kimiko Glenn) and other staff members who work with Emma and Jack, including Emma’s work rival Artemis (Kate Easton) and her manager Cybill (Laverne Cox). Through them, we learn about Emma’s other relationships and career goals. It makes her a little less like those typical rom-com female leads who only need romance to be truly happy.

As a rom-com, how does the comedy part perform? Not too shabby, if you find awkward social moments hilarious. That seems to be a directorial choice. In any case, waves of laughter were heard every now and then in the cinema hall. Comedy aside, they also tried to build some sort of mystery around Jack Harper, but it fell flat. The film tried to offer an explanation for his secretive ways but it ultimately failed to make sense.

Apart from being just a plot device, the film discusses the theme of secret through various characters in the film. It poses questions about why we keep secrets and the importance of sharing secrets in a relationship. The film does get a bit preachy about this topic towards the end, but it still managed to keep its feet grounded in the romance plot.

With the right expectations, Can You Keep A Secret? is a charming enough romp for rom-com fans to like. A large part of why the film is better than a typical rom-com would be Daddario’s magnetism and how consistently it portrays her character’s relationships outside of romantic context. Do not overthink the plot and you might just have an enjoyable 95 minutes.
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