Stream It Or Skip It: ‘Love Tactics 2’ on Netflix, A Turkish Screwball Comedy That Delights

In the Turkish comedy Love Tactics 2, now available on Netflix, Asli is a fierce feminist with no intention of ever getting married. But when her boyfriend, Kerem, declares that he also hates the idea of marriage, Asli worries she might lose him, and starts to play mind games so he’ll propose. It’s a classic hijinks-filled romance that feels like it’s straight out of the Julia Roberts-Reese Witherspoon-Kate Hudson playbook, so if you’re looking for a satisfying screwball comedy, look no further.

Opening Shot: “Just like in a fairy tale, saying yes to the charming prince, the man you love, vowing to be loyal and devoted for the rest of your life, and living happily until the day you die with the man you love, it’s every girl’s dream, isn’t it?” a narrator asks, as the camera pans across a woman in a wedding gown. Just then an irate woman enters, shouting, “It’s all nonsense, isn’t it?”

The Gist: That irate woman is Asli (Demet Ozdemir), a modern, independent woman who believes in love and passion, but doesn’t believe in marriage. And she has no problem telling her best friend Cansu (Deniz Baydar), who is about to get married to her fiancé Tuna (Atakan Çelik), why her upcoming wedding is a terrible decision. Asli is dating Kerem (Sukru Ozyildiz) who also doesn’t believe in marriage, so it seems like a great relationship, but when Kerem is a little too enthusiastic about how he never wants to get married, it triggers something in Asli.

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“I understand not wanting to get married,” Asli tells Cansu and her other best friend Ezgi (Hande Yilmaz), who seem confused that tough, independent Asli is upset. Wasn’t she just going on and on about how marriage is a scam? But Asli explains, “But not wanting to marry me? Only I’m allowed to not want that!”

So Asli concocts a plan to make Kerem want to get married. But Kerem and his two buddies, Tuna and Emir (Bora Akkas) immediately realize what she’s up to and help him devise his own counterattack, a plan to make Asli realize she really doesn’t want to marry him. For the middle third of the film, the couple try to outwit one another, until they have a near-death experience on a prop plane they’ve rented, and Kerem finally proposes, realizing that he doesn’t want to live without Asli. But Asli faces a dilemma: she has an offer to expand her fashion business in Dubai, and even though she wanted to win the game and make Kerem want to marry her, she feels that marrying him could compromise all her feminist and professional values after all. What’s a girl to do?!

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Photo: Netflix

What Movies Will It Remind You Of? Thanks to its comic, chaotic energy, Love Tactics 2 reminded me a lot of My Best Friend’s Wedding and How To Lose A Guy In 10 Days. Though Asli is not trying to steal a groom away or get a man to fall out of love with her, there’s a similar game of deception leading to love being played here.

Our Take: If Love Tactics 2 were an American movie, it would absolutely star Reese Witherspoon or a Jennifer who has been married to Ben Affleck. The premise is clever, and it combines the pure silliness of classic rom-coms with punchy jokes that are genuinely funny, and a few great performances, especially from Demet Ozdemir who can create a laugh with a simple, deadpan expression.

That being said, there are a lot of over-the-top moments of broad humor, one might characterize them as wacky and played out, like an overly silly scene of Asli and Kerem changing the diaper of a friend’s baby and nearly passing out from the smell of poop. Similarly, a scene with Asli’s father, Ercu, who is going through a stereotypical mid-life crisis, held some hilarious dialogue (Asli’s mother rolls her eyes describing how her husband is now on Instagram, but has to buy his followers), but it was watered down by Ercu’s exaggerated machismo. If that moment, and a few others, were dialed back just a tad the film would have been the better for it. And yet, it was still a truly enjoyable way to pass 100 minutes.

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Sex and Skin: One tame sex scene, plus all the women wear body-baring teeny dresses and lingerie, but it’s nothing you haven’t seen on a Monday at the Selling Sunset offices.

Parting Shot: Ultimately, Kerem and Asli get married. As they walk down the aisle hand in hand, Asli says, “You’re all wondering if I went to Dubai, aren’t you? Of course I did. Because our marriage doesn’t include hurting, limiting, or manipulating each other. And it won’t ever. What we’ll live through and how we’ll do it is up to us.” As the movie ends, we watch their wedding party dance as she winks at the camera and throws her bouquet.

Sleeper Star: Demet Ozdemir is a gifted comedic actress (who is also gorgeous) and is one of the best things about the film.

Most Pilot-y Line: “Marriage means the end of love, excitement, and passion!” Asli explains during one of her anti-marriage, pro-woman diatribes, in which she declares that the pressure placed on women to marry and have kids is a stain on society. Of course, by the end she realizes that marriage doesn’t actually have to mean those things.

Our Call: STREAM IT. If you love romantic farces, Love Tactics 2 is a really fun one filled with some common tropes, but plenty of original ones too.

Liz Kocan is a pop culture writer living in Massachusetts. Her biggest claim to fame is the time she won on the game show Chain Reaction.


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