Love Hard, a romantic comedy starred by Nina Dobrev, Jimmy O. Yang and Darren Barnet was like a fresh breath of air. Just binge watched The Vampire Diaries a couple weeks back and became a fan of Nina, Ian and Paul (the actors playing the lead roles). I was looking for other movies they have worked in… And that’s how I stumbled upon this movie.
I have seen Jimmy O. Yang only in stand up comedy shorts talking about his Chinese father and Darren in Never Have I Ever (a Netflix series)… So the combination of people seemed a little odd, rather unexpected!
The movie’s main lead is Natalie played by Nina. Nat is a writer, who works for a Magazine/Website. She lives in Los Angeles and writes about her terrible dates in her column. The disaster dates might have gained her some decent popularity among the readers, however Nat herself is losing hope in love…
Just when Nat is about to give up on finding the right guy for herself, she meets Josh on a dating app. Right off the bat- Josh looked like a guy coming out of a girl’s fantasy. He’s good looking and smart. has good sense of humor, sincere and friendly.
Josh and Nat started talking day and night about anything and everything. Within matter of months they grew very close to each other… Nat’s faith in love was restored, she wanted to take it further… So for Christmas she went to Lake Placid, Josh’s home town to surprise him and meet him in person.
Nat’s boss wasn’t so happy about her seemingly boring date- as only the disasters would entice the readers. Nat’s close friend found Josh too good to be true…
Nat had a rough start of her journey, she lost her luggage in the plane… Then somehow managed to hop in a cab and reach Josh’s place. Josh lived with his parents, Natalie was welcomed by them.
Finally she met the guy, she’d been talking to for days and night. After all, Josh wasn’t the handsome hunk he seemed to be in the dating app… He was an average looking Asian guy who was shocked to find Natalie in his living room.
Nat realized that she’d been catfished, there was no way for her to stay in that house for any longer. She headed to a local bar to think about her next step… That’s where she met Tag, the handsome guy whose photo was used by Josh in the dating app. Nat thought of giving this another shot and talk to Tag. However she got an allergic reaction from a drink and Josh came in time to take her to a doctor.
Nat was still very angry, Josh apologized to her and told her about Tag. Tag was his classmate from school, he promised to help Natalie to befriend with him. He told Nat everything that Tag loved- adventure activities, literatures etc. Tag seemed to have very different taste than Nat, but she still wanted to impress him pretending to like everything same as him.
They met for a rock climbing- Nat was terrified of height… Josh helped her to calm her down and be cool in front of Tag. So Tag started liking Natalie. On the other hand, Josh’s family took Nat as Josh’s girlfriend and treated her like family.
Josh had an attention-seeking elder brother who would always took the spotlight… Nobody would care for him. He was passionate about candle-making but couldn’t gather courage to follow his passion leaving his father’s shop. Josh was a great guy, with a pure heart. But he lacked confidence. Nat was helping him to boost his self esteem.
Josh’s brother was skeptical about his girlfriend from the very first night, he was looking for evidence to prove that Nat wasn’t his gf. So one night, one thing led to another and Josh ended up proposing Nat in front of the family to show that his relationship is legit.
Nat and Josh decided to continue acting like couples till the New year’s eve and outside home, Josh was setting her up with Tag… Nat told a lot of lies, pretend to like everything that she didn’t to impress Tag. Josh’s family threw an engagement party for them in Tag’s father restaurant – now all the lies were discovered. Tag confronted Nat, “You were upset with Josh for catfishing you, but didn’t you do the exact thing to me? Pretending to be someone that you are not…!”
Things went downhill from there- Josh’s old parents really loved Nat, knowing all the lies they were heart-broken. Nat left their house and checked in a hotel and started contemplating about her life. While Josh was helping Nat with her relationship, Nat asked him to set up his dating profile again with his own photos- reassuring him that he was worthy of love.
Sitting in the hotel room by herself, Nat found out that Josh took her advice seriously and created a genuine account this time showing his true self. Nat realized that it was Josh whom she loved, his personality, his sense of humor, she never really had an issue with his appearance either. Nat went back to Josh’s house, proposed him… Everybody cheered when they got back together!
Love Hard is light hearted movie- it doesn’t have too many characters, too many plots to care for. The premise is relatable, so are the characters. Finding love in today’s time is truly a nightmare… You can find 100 dates for sure, but finding that one person who is genuine and is not there just for the show is rare… It’s a reminder to not take life so seriously and have fun!
Overall I’d rate this 4/5 for giving me a good time and pleasant break in my mundane routine.
Thanks for reading, have a great day! XOXO