‘Cherry’: a movie whose ambitions did not pay off

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Credit Apple TV+

Cherry features strong actors but doesn’t utilize them properly.

Jocelyn Arroyo-Ariza, Staff Writer

Tom Holland is best known for playing Spider-Man in the MCU since his major film debut in 2016 in “Captain America: Civil War. He is a beloved actor, crafting a personality around his quirks such as being the go-to for spoilers and his bromances with his co-stars. As of late, he is trying to break away from his family-friendly image as seen from his role as Arvin Russel in “The Devil At the Time. When long-time collaborators the Russo brothers approached him to star in their first post-Marvel picture he gladly accepted. “Cherry” quickly gained traction as an experimental fourth-wall-breaking exposé of a solider turned criminal. What we got instead was secondhand embarrassment.   

  

Released in theaters on February 26 and to Apple TV+ on March 12, “Cherry” has gathered negative reviews from audiences and critics. The plot can be simplified to the main character Cherry falling in love with Emily (Ciara Bravo) who decides to study in Montreal, leaving him broken-hearted and enlisting in the army. However, Emily decides not to leave him but it is too late. Most of the story beats are spoiled by the trailers as another awards bait picture.   

 

“Cherry” has a lot of questionable moments, but some are better unsaid. Other moments that are supposed to be serious are laughable at best, alarmingly so since the movie pertained to the opioid crisis. The story seems simple following Cherry falling in love, dropping out of college, joining the military and coming home suffering from PTSD. It is a plotline that you expect; perhaps the Russo brothers agreed to compensate for this by trying to spice up the runtime to an overly long two and a half hours.   

 

Tom Holland and Ciara Bravo are miscast; both actors are still playing roles as teenagers and it feels awkward and unbelievable to have them as a married couple. They are both fine actors that are muddled in a lack of direction lost in the flashing style. Holland and Bravo both give it their best attempt, working with questionable lines that send the audience into disbelief that this is what the marriage between Spiderman and Katie from Big Time Rush would look like.   

 

The two hours and twenty minutes drag, yet the actual story progresses quickly, creating an uneasy atmosphere. The audience has to fill in the blanks inferring what the characters are like with the movie providing so little. You are expected to be familiar with the characters without knowing them. Cherry does not properly introduce the characters as they go from a cute college couple to robbing banks.   

 

It is hard to imagine that no one in the cast or crew noticed how “Cherry” was portraying this story. The seriousness of the movie is replaced with framing deceives that would be found in an amateur student film that doesn’t know better. Yet, the Russo brothers do know better as they have arguably directed the best Marvel movies. If you are a fan of Tom Holland or any of the actors, I would suggest skipping “Cherry” because you are not missing much.