Director Shekhar Kapur’s last full-length feature film was the Oscar-nominated sequel “Elizabeth: The Golden Age” (2007). The Pakistani director built his entire career on the success of working with Cate Blanchett in the dark, elaborate period pieces. He trades the costume drama for a not-so-dramatic return with the romance “What’s Love Got to Do With It.”

It’s a modern-day look at arranged marriage in Europe, wrapped in a plot we’ve seen in every romantic comedy for the past thirty years. Instead of “Love, Actually,” the characters’ joke this story is “Love, Contractually.” It’s one of a slew of unfunny jokes that plague the script. The casting isn’t much better; the plotting is horrendous and as the film tries to tackle too many subjects, it loses all entertainment value.

Dustin Chase is a film critic and associate editor with Texas Art & Film, which is based in Galveston. Visit


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