Friday, September 29, 2006

Friday Film Night - About a Boy

When you think of Hugh Grant and romantic comedy, the films that immediately spring to mind are NOTTING HILL, BRIDGET JONES' DIARY and FOUR WEDDINGS AND A FUNERAL.

So where does ABOUT A BOY fit into the scheme of things?

This film, released in May 2002, spans genres: comedy, drama and romance.
I had heard little about it, usually a bonus when watching a film for the first time (no friends' preconceptions to sway you can sometimes be a good thing!)
Like books, I find movies very subjective and a rom-com I love may be one you hate.
With that in mind, here is my 'subjective' view on ABOUT A BOY.

Any film starring Hugh Grant as a shallow, self-serving womaniser who does anything to pick up women (including invent a 2 year old son Ned to attend SPAT-Single Parents Alone Together-and prey on sex-starved single mums) would capture my attention, particularly with the frequent forays into his internal POV which the audience is privvy to.
I had to cringe at his audacity while chuckling at his ingenuity.

Of course, playing a single parent has its downfalls and Will (Hugh) meets Marcus (Nicholas Hoult), a misfit 12 year old with major problems at school and a depressed mother at home (Toni Collette) who soon turns his world on its head.

The developing relationship between Will and Marcus is a delight to watch, with many laugh-out-loud moments. Though riddled with idiosyncrasies, Marcus is a great kid and you can't help but empathise with him. Through their bizarre friendship, Marcus learns what it's like to be cool and Will learns to be a better person, opening his heart to a world of possibilities.

Is this movie funny? You bet.
Is this movie dramatic? It has its moments.
Is this movie romantic? In parts.

Combine all of the above and you have a winner.
I actually cried towards the end (and no, it isn't when Will finally gets his act together with Rachel Weisz, the woman of his dreams) but a poignant scene featuring Marcus singing a song for his mum. Real tear-jerking stuff.

My feel-good rating: 7/10
Definitely worth seeing.

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  1. Ooohh, have to watch this again. Cant remember much of the film apart from the dead duck and the huge bread, LOL! I remember getting the tissues out as well though...

  2. Yes, I thought the song part at the end was very poignant too. So what did everyone think to LOVE ACTUALLY? Another rom-com with Hugh?

  3. I can't stand him, so never watch his films. I know lots of people like him so I guess it's just me.

  4. Strong opinions form Nell! I love it!

    I actually really like Hugh Grant. I thought he was great in this. Not all that likeable but likeable all the same. A guy who thought he was bad but truly was good when it came to the crunch.

    And I adore Rachel Weisz. Did I spell that right? Unlikely.

    (Nicolette watch this space for more on Love Actually closer to Xmas ;))


  5. I first became aware of this from the poster. WHO was that gorgeous man? Friends pointed out that Hugh Grant was completely gorgeous, especially in Four Weddings and Notting Hill. But I LOATHED THOSE FILMS. I hate the bumbling aristo type who can't bring themselves to talk of emotions.

    But ABOUT A BOY - I loved. (He also redeemed Bridget Jones for me. Hugh Grant as a bad boy, I can definitely enjoy.)

    And Fiona L's right - great soundtrack. (Bridget Jones would've been better if they'd used the ORIGINALS instead of appalling cover versions, but don't get me started!)

    Right - back to Naples. I need a latte.

  6. I love this movie, one of my faves. Best scene for me is two, the one at the end when Hugh gets on stage and earlier when he takes the boy shopping.

  7. Must admit, I have a kind of love/hate thing for Hugh.

    Sometimes he infuriates me, other times he's bumblingly gorgeous.

    This one made me smile all the way through, when I wasn't sniffling, that is!

  8. All else aside, I do enjoy this man's way with wry and dry humour and I think he's a talented actor. About A Boy really touched my heart, as did Notting Hill, which as it happens, I rewatched this week.


  9. I don't like the bumbline...but love NH and FWAAF, so I'm a fan. But to me, this movie is his finest role...well...he's really good in Mickey Blue Eyes, too.

    But here, I think we see the real struggle, makes him seem human.


  10. Oh, I'd forgotten Miggie Blue Eyes *g*. Must see if we have it in our collection. Yep, we do. Must watch it again soon.

    AFTER I finish wrestling with my revisions.

    It's chilly again. What happened to Spring?