Set during the 2010 iteration of T In The Park, Scotland’s biggest music festival, Tonight You’re Mine tries to use its teeming, chaotic backdrop of bands, booze, and camping concertgoers to give its wisp of a romance some extra voltage. But while director David Mackenzie (whose recent work has ranged from the Ashton Kutcher gigolo drama Spread to the apocalyptic love story Perfect Sense) enjoys the idea and imagery of the event, he can’t stand the people in attendance, if his characters are any indication. Luke Treadaway plays half of a successful American duo called The Make, and thanks to a brazen contrivance, he ends up handcuffed to Natalia Tena, lead singer of local all-girl punk group The Dirty Pinks. They instantly hate each other, which as the movies have taught us, means they’re about to fall in love—and they do, in a bruisingly unconvincing fashion, over the course of a night.
Treadaway’s character is an arrogant, preening twat who doesn’t believe in using porta-potties, and Tena’s is a bundle of bad attitude who within a minute of meeting him is threatening to smash his guitar. She gives him a hard time about dating a high-maintenance model, though in spite of her tough-chick posturing, her own significant other is a buttoned-down banker she doesn’t seem to like much. The other half of The Make (Mathew Baynton) and the band’s manager (Gavin Mitchell) fill out additional runtime in their quest to get laid. The main pair’s journey to find a way out of their predicament entwines with footage of actual attendees gleefully rolling in the mud; singing along to performances from Newton Faulkner, The Proclaimers, and others; running around in crazy outfits; and shrieking on carnival rides.
Treadaway and Tena are meant to have a deep connection based on their love of music, but their barely there characters get together only because the story requires them to. Musicians, according to Tonight You’re Mine, are a callous, narcissistic lot—fortunately, the music they make gets a pass. Every once in a while, the film captures the giddy joy a festival can bring, whether in the surge of a crowd in response to a familiar song, watching birds swarm over the sleeping park at dawn, or the opening shot of The Make playing in a moving car as people wave or chase them down through the back window. But viewers who want that experience are better off buying a ticket to an actual festival.