Romantic comedies have become increasingly rare in the age of streaming platforms and “theme park” filmmaking. It’s now hard to believe that it used to have one of the highest box-office turnouts among all the genres of cinema. Because of this, ‘Marry Me’ is a breath of fresh air. It is unapologetically predictable and doesn’t bother much with pathos. It smartly employs the stratospheric charm of its two lead stars, Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson, to tell a genuinely engaging story. It is admittedly silly at times and does require some suspension of disbelief, but we can chalk that as part and parcel of 2020s filmmaking.
‘Marry Me’ is the cinematic adaptation of a namesake graphic novel by Bobby Crosby. At the heart of the narrative is the unconventional love story between pop star Katalina “Kat” Valdez (Lopez) and math teacher Charlie Gilbert (Wilson). If you are wondering whether these two characters end up together at the end of ‘Marry Me,’ we got you covered. SPOILERS AHEAD.
Do Kat and Charlie End Up Together?
Kat and Charlie get together in the most unusual circumstances. At the start of the film, Kat is set to marry fellow Hispanic popstar Bastian (Maluma) at one of their concerts in front of 20 million fans. The film’s title refers to the song that Kat and Bastian have created together. Meanwhile, Charlie is a single father and an archetypical optimistic teacher. His daughter, Lou (Chloe Coleman), is at an age when silent indifference and exasperated sighs are the only things parents really get out of their children.
Charlie’s lesbian colleague and best friend, Parker (Sarah Silverman), is a huge fan of Kat. Initially, she intends to go to the Marry Me concert with her girlfriend of two weeks. But that doesn’t work out, and Charlie and Lou end up accompanying her. Right when Kat is performing, news breaks about Bastian kissing Kat’s assistant. Her trusted manager, Collin (John Bradley), breaks the news to her as she goes back to the stage. Like any true fan, Parker has brought a Marry Me sign with her. She hands the sign over to Charlie to brag to her ex about where she is. Kat somehow singles Charlie out among tens of thousands of her fans, and something unexpected happens — she accepts his “proposal.”
Realizing how vulnerable and lonely she must be feeling up on the stage, Charlie steps up. In front of the stunned world, the two of them get married. Then comes the ridicule and disbelief and fill the internet, media, and late-night talk shows. Charlie’s quiet life is suddenly invaded by the cacophony of social media and the world of glamor. But as the film progresses, these two individuals, who would have never met under different circumstances, start to fall in love with each other.
Wilson portrays Charlie with quiet dignity and loneliness. The latter serves as the focal point of Charlie’s connection with Kat. They are different in many ways. Despite being divorced thrice, Kat is incredibly optimistic about marriage and love. On the other hand, since his wife left him, Charlie has grown skeptical about the whole marital institution.
Their blossoming relationship allows both of them to grow. Kat inevitably becomes part of his life. She meets Lou, his friends, students, and colleagues and attends the school dance with him. When Bastian rushes back into her life with the announcement that Kat has been nominated for the Grammy Award for the first time in her career for “Marry Me,” Charlie lets his insecurities get better of him and decides to walk away, believing that it’s the best thing to do. As it turns out, it wasn’t. They both become miserable and lonely. However, Kat doesn’t resume her relationship with Bastian and has an epiphany at ‘The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.’
Earlier in the film, Kat said during her first press conference with Charlie, “We pick the guy, we keep our name, and let them earn the right to stay.” An extension of this statement plays out in the film’s climactic scene as she subverts the classic “race for your love” trope done by the male protagonist and travels to Chicago to reunite with Charlie. There, at the Mathalon, she holds up the Marry Me sign, and she and Charlie reconcile. The film ends with them and other couples (some from the film and some not) speaking about how they originally met.
Who Wins the Mathalon?
An important subplot in ‘Marry Me’ involves Lou and the Mathalon. Like her father, Lou is interested in math, but she had an extreme case of stage fright during the previous year’s Mathalon. As a result, she has been traumatized since then. When Kat hears about this, she explains her own issues with stage fright and advises the young girl to divert her focus through dancing. During this year’s Mathalon, when Lou starts to feel the same negative emotions, her father reminds her of Kat’s advice. Lou starts dancing and correctly answers the question she was asked. Unfortunately, she does so after the time has run out. As a result, her team, the Coolidge Pi-thons, loses the finals to the Trinity Numerators.
Read More: Where Was Marry Me Filmed?