About A Boy (2002)

(In theaters, July 2002) Another satisfying entry in the “British novel adaptation” category, About A Boy is a bit too meaningful to be strictly funny. Oh, Hugh Grant is at the top of his game as an immature bachelor who discovers a better life: his internal monologue contains enough quotable gems to keep you smiling. But it’s small quibbles such as a deliberately humiliating finale, a ghastly-looking Toni Collette (who might actually look worse and worse in each successive film) and, oh yes, a suicide attempt that sour the comedy of the film. Now, purists may argue that it simply makes the funny stuff funnier and (again) more meaningful, but for anyone looking for the next Bridget Jones’s Diary, well, it’s no breezy summer entertainment. Make no mistake, though; this is a great film, well-written and decently directed. But as far as enjoyment goes, hmm, your mileage may differ.

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