|Universal Pictures | Release Date: May 17, 2002||CRITIC SCORE DISTRIBUTION|
It's hard to stomp on a movie that pulls together a rich lay-about, hippies, a punk girl and an Amnesty International worker in a sort of Peaceable Kingdom, but About a Boy shows the limits of affability.
Because a gradually thawing Will plays more to Grant's strengths, the second part of the film, helped as well by Rachel Weisz as a love interest, is much more fun. But it is still hard not to feel that this film is pushing us too hard, slickly trying to seem more honest than it actually is. Read full review
Perhaps the most remarkable aspect of About a Boy is how substantial it plays -- as a feel-good film with weight, a knowing comedy with dramatic depth.
A comedy hit, but its secret is that it delves deeper than the usual summer fare.
Movie purists will tell you that a heavy reliance on voice-over is a sin (show, dont tell), but when the words are this funny, to hell with purity.
The timing and cutting of the film are terrific, the build-up to an absurdly hilarious climax is just right, and the performances are near perfect.
Better than a feelgood movie, it's a feelgreat movie -- genuinely clever, affecting when you least expect it to be and funny from start to finish.
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