Hotel de Love

Watch Hotel de Love

"A comedy about the romantically challenged and passionately confused."
  • R
  • 1996
  • 1 hr 35 min
  • 6.0  (669)
  • 47

Hotel de Love is a 1996 Australian romantic comedy directed by Craig Rosenberg. The film revolves around two brothers, Rick and Stephen, who run a dilapidated hotel in rural Australia. Rick, played by Aden Young, is a hopeless romantic who still holds a candle for his high school sweetheart, Alison, while Stephen, played by Simon Bossell, is a playboy who has never really wanted to settle down. The two brothers are reunited when Alison books a room at the hotel, where a wedding is also taking place.

The film has a nostalgic feel to it, as it transports audiences back to the 1980s, with its soundtrack and clothing choices. As a rom-com, the movie has all the predictable beats, but the performances and writing elevate it beyond a typical genre flick. Aden Young is charming as Rick, the lovelorn older brother. He's desperate to reconnect with Alison, who is played by the stunning Saffron Burrows. Alison, herself is wrestling with her own conflicting feelings, as she's set to marry a dull but kind-hearted man.

As the film progresses, audiences are introduced to various guests at the hotel who are all intertwined in their own romantic stories. There's the lonely travel writer who is looking for love, the newlyweds who are having doubts, and the couple who reconnect over a shared love of Van Morrison. While their stories may be somewhat predictable, the movie still manages to make them feel fresh.

One of the standout moments of the movie is a scene between Rick and Alison, where they dance together in the abandoned hotel restaurant. The scene is shot beautifully, with soft lighting, and the chemistry between the two is palpable. The film is also peppered with humorous moments, with Stephen's antics providing much-needed levity to the sometimes-sappy storyline.

The cinematography is also worth noting, as the shots of the Australian countryside are breathtaking. The hotel, while rundown, is still charming and has a warmth to it that makes it feel like a character in and of itself. The production design team does a great job of making the hotel feel like it has a rich history, even if the building is falling apart.

The film's soundtrack is also a highlight, with classic tracks like Van Morrison's "Brown Eyed Girl" and Bronski Beat's "Smalltown Boy" used to great effect. The music helps to transport audiences back to a time where big hair and oversized blazers were the norm.

Overall, Hotel de Love is an enjoyable romantic comedy that manages to sidestep many of the cliches of the genre. The performances are solid, the writing is witty, and the cinematography and soundtrack help to transport audiences back to a simpler time. While it may not break any new ground, fans of rom-coms will certainly find something to enjoy here.

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  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 35 min
  • Language
  • IMDB Rating
    6.0  (669)
  • Metascore