Rye Lane Could Very Well Be the Rom Com of 2023

The prospect of watching a new rom com in this day and age can often be an exploration of one’s guilty pleasures. Frequently formulaic and dependent on the beautiful A-list cast, romantic comedies, both on the big and small screens, represent more of a comfort food than an exciting, exuberant new take on the tropes and mechanisms of a rom com that might push the art of comedy of people falling in love forward.

Raine Allen-Miller’s zesty feature debut Rye Lane not only brings a surprising freshness to a rom com, but one that accomplishes that seemingly impossible task through effervescent simplicity. Just from the first sequence of the movie, you’re invited to a bustling, exuberant part of South London full of color and characters, which, is in of itself, a ride worth taking on your own. A neon color palate gets encapsulated in a lens that’s bordering on fisheye it’s so wide. The joyful look of Rye Lane gives echoes of Wes Anderson, though much more jubilant and free-spirited, and signals that you’re in for a special treat from Allen-Miller.

The spirited, yet scorned lovebirds, played so disarmingly by David Jonsson and Vivian Oparah, give an effortless pace to the love story. Nothing feels rushed or shoe-horned about their “meet cute” since the chemistry between the two is so undeniable. Also, they’re so realized as flawed characters that you forget that Allen-Miller is telling a mostly, classic kind of love story. The seams are hidden here with Jonsson and Oparah being one of the most naturally feeling pairings in romantic comedy that we’ve seen in recent memory.

Rather than having to be on a plane and getting emotive from watching a new romantic comedy on a tiny screen that otherwise feel stale, Rye Lane shines as a hopeful entry for the genre as well as Raine Allen-Miller, Davis Jonsson, and Vivian Oparah.

You can go see all of this yourself now as Rye Lane is streaming on Hulu.