The Weitz Brothers' ABOUT A BOY
Movie review by Dennis D. McDonald
Refreshing. Oddball. Quirky.
This Hugh Grant comedy again reminds us that that the Hugh Grant we think we know is really quite a gifted comic actor, when given the right vehicle.
This one is. Imagine some of the best qualities of BRIDGET JONES’ DIARY, SMALL TIME CROOKS, and NOTTING HILL, all rolled into one. Add some refreshingly different characters and an uncompromisingly shallow main character, and there you have it.
My favorite scene: Hugh Grant’s character, independently wealthy, finds his social and romantic options constantly restricted since his life of leisure has cut him off from the world at large — and from the romantic complications that he has learned to live without. At a dinner party he has to explain, in answer to the question “What do you do?” that he does — literally — nothing.
Then along comes a fatherless young adolescent boy with a suicidal mother, and a friendship develops. And he uses this to help him win the lady he seeks.
This movie is a pleasure to watch. It’s fun that both my wife and my teenage daughter enjoyed it, and so did I. That’s an accomplishment. It could have been a total saccharine turn-off, but it’s not.
Review copyright (c) 2003 by Dennis D. McDonald