Our editorial review tells me that "Just the Ticket" was dumped into theater in the winter of 1999; well, Japanese release was much worse. It never received a theatrical release, going straight to video, and worse still, we had to wait until February of 2002! Does this lukewarm reception mean two stars' recent career decline? Whatever the reason may be, "Just the Ticket" is not as bad as those cold reaction suggests.
The best part of the film is, surprise! the two leading stars. Andy Garcia is well-cast as a ticket scalper with cute "puppy's eyes" while Andie MacDowell succeeds in exuding enough sexual chemistry to convince you that they were, and are going to be, lovers. Whenever those two likable actors share the screen, the film sparks with fire ... in the bedroom, in the kitchen, and wherever they are. I don't know how many faithful fans are watching this, but they deserve a chance to play a big role (no more "Town and Country" for Andie, please) in the film again.
Negative impressions of this romantic comedy come from, I think, two following reasons: supporting players and overlong script. Except for the good performance of Richard Bradford's Benny, who is clearly playing a losing game in front of powerful newcomers, none is memorable. And the film's tone is very uneven; it sometimes takes itself too seriously to be philosophical, but at other places it resorts to incredibly silly things -- see Andy Garcia disguised as ... a nun, for instance. No wonder the studio could not be confident in its release.
As a whole decent romantic comedy, "Just the Ticket" manages to deliver what movie fans who love this genre want to see. And the dog is cute, too. We have no fresh insider look on the world of ticket scalpers, nothing new as a romantic comedy, but two leads are so good that it is hardly possible for me to nag, though maybe I should.