I Do… Until I Don’t opened with an interesting idea: What if marriage operated under a seven-year contract with an option to renew? Although the opening dragged, as a viewer, I kept hope alive that I would become wrapped up in the story driven by such a great, initial question.

It never happened.

Written and directed by Lake Bell (who also stars), the film follows three couples who become the subjects of an outrageous documentary about marriage being an antiquated idea that needs to adjust with the times. What follows are three separate stories of broken relationships: One is an “open-marriage,” another is a bored couple approaching their 10-year mark, and the other is a pair of empty-nesters that seem to low-key hate each other.

I’m sure you’re enticed by the sound of these characters and the movie’s premise, but the idea itself is the only place I found excitement. The writing was cliché and dry, often times trying very, very hard to be funny. Too hard, to be honest.

Fortunately, a high point for me was Dolly Wells’ funny performance of documentarian, Vivian. Her imagining of the faux artist was sharp, and sustained its ridiculousness throughout. And thank God for Paul Reiser and Wyatt Cenac providing some old school/new school eye candy hotness, which kept my attention whenever Wells wasn’t on the screen.

The ending was disappointingly generic and flat. And it should’ve ended there, but it kept going, providing us with an irrelevant birth scene that really added no value to the story.

I’m a big fan of Lake Bell and was really rooting for this film, but as clever of a concept I Do… Until I Don’t is, I’m afraid it’s not moving enough to persuaded anyone to sit completely through its runtime.

I Do… Until I Don’t (2017)
Director Lake Bell
Writer Lake Bell
Stars Lake Bell, Ed Helms, Wyatt Cenac, Paul Reiser, Dolly Wells
Rating R