Larry Crowne

"OK"

Larry Crowne Review


A painfully squishy centre completely undoes this rom-com, although it's difficult to know what might have made it less goofy. The diminished dual star-wattage of Hanks and Roberts just about makes it watchable.

After being sacked for his lack of a degree, Larry (Hanks) enrols in a community college. There isn't much else going on in his life, so he dives into his studies: Mercedes (Roberts) teaches speech, while Dr Matsutani (Takei) teaches economics. When Larry downsizes to a scooter to save money, he befriends the cool scooter-riding Talia (Mbatha-Raw), who gives him a style makeover. He also joins her biker gang, led by her boyfriend Gordo (Valderrama). Meanwhile, Mercedes is struggling with her marriage to Dean (Cranston). So maybe she and Larry can help each other outside the classroom as well.

It's extremely obvious where this is going, so of course the screenplay has to throw a series of implausible obstacles in the way of our protagonists. The main thing here is jealousy, as Gordo gets hot and bothered about the attention Talia gives to Larry, while Mercedes shoots annoyed glances at Talia for the same reason. Of course, we know better, so it's all pretty toothless. And even less convincing is Mercedes' marriage trouble, caused because Dean isn't as high-achieving as she'd like him to be, and he also looks at swimsuit models on the internet (which she calls "porn").

And while Hanks and Roberts play everything with game faces, the cast around them actually have moments when they add a bit more spark to the film. Henson and Cedric are enjoyable as Larry's offbeat neighbours and Takei's grinning, self-pleased professor is hilarious. On the other hand, Mercedes' students aren't much more than a collection of amusing cliches. Even the few with subplots don't have much to do.

In other words, the whole film feels half-baked. It's efficiently directed and assembled, with likeable acting and a warmly charming tone that sometimes drifts into corny sentimentality and glib moralising. But the real problem is that the film seems to be saying that a degree is the solution to the current recession. Sadly, thousands of graduates can quickly prove this wrong.



Facts and Figures

Genre: Romance

Run time: 98 mins

In Theaters: Friday 1st July 2011

Box Office USA: $35.6M

Box Office Worldwide: $36.2M

Budget: $30M

Distributed by: Universal Pictures

Production compaines: Vendome Pictures, Universal Pictures

Reviews

Contactmusic.com: 2.5 / 5

Rotten Tomatoes: 35%
Fresh: 67 Rotten: 123

IMDB: 6.0 / 10

Cast & Crew

Director:

Starring: as Larry Crowne, as Mercedes Tainot, as Dean Tainot, as Lamar, as Frances, Taraji P. Henson as B'Ella, as Dr. Matsutani, as Map Genie, Sarah Mahoney as Samantha, Roxana Ortega as Alvarez, as Talia

Contactmusic


Links



Advertisement

Contactmusic 2017 Exclusive

New Movies

Hidden Figures Movie Review

Hidden Figures Movie Review

This film recounts such a great true story that we don't mind the fact that...

The Founder Movie Review

The Founder Movie Review

This is the story of Ray Kroc, the man who created the concept of McDonald's....

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

John Wick: Chapter 2 Movie Review

Keanu Reeves picks up his supremely efficient hitman immediately where the 2015 original left him:...

Fences Movie Review

Fences Movie Review

After winning Tony Awards on Broadway, Denzel Washington and Viola Davis reteam for a film...

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

The Lego Batman Movie Movie Review

A spin-off from 2014's awesome The Lego Movie, this raucously paced action-comedy is proof that...

The Space Between Us Movie Review

The Space Between Us Movie Review

While the premise of this movie makes it look like a sci-fi adventure, the truth...

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

Toni Erdmann Movie Review

On paper, the idea of a two-hour 40-minute German comedy may not seem very promising,...

Advertisement
Gold Movie Review

Gold Movie Review

Based on a true story, this lively and sometimes outrageous adventure is packed with twists...

Loving Movie Review

Loving Movie Review

While this film tackles a huge issue in the history of race relations in America,...

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

T2 Trainspotting Movie Review

It's been 20 years since we last saw four freewheeling young junkies from Edinburgh spiral...

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Hacksaw Ridge Movie Review

Based on an astounding true story, this battlefield drama mixes warm emotion with intense action...

Sing Movie Review

Sing Movie Review

The quality of the animation in this musical comedy may not be up to Pixar...

Jackie Movie Review

Jackie Movie Review

Rather than make a standard biopic about the most famous First Lady in American history,...

Split Movie Review

Split Movie Review

After a few badly received sci-fi blockbusters, M. Night Shyamalan returned to his earthier style...

Advertisement
Artists
Actors
    Filmmakers
      Artists
      Bands
        Musicians
          Artists
          Celebrities
             
              Artists
              Interviews
                musicians & bands in the news
                  actors & filmmakers in the news
                    celebrities in the news

                      Go Back in Time using our News archive to see what happened on a particular day in the past.