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Comedy - Romantic

Larry Crowne (2011)


Duration 1h 38m Rating (UK) 12A
Source of story An original screenplay
Director Tom Hanks
Writers/Script Tom Hanks, Nia Vardalos
Starring Tom Hanks, Cedric the Entertainer, Taraji P. Henson, Julia Roberts, Pam Grier, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Rami Malek, George Takei, Bryan Cranston

Elevator Pitch: Larry Crowne is an employee in a U-Mart, until they let him go, and he finds himself in financial trouble, particularly since he lacks a college education which will enable him to find further work. He goes to community college where he attends classes tutored by troubled wife, Mercedes Taintot, and by smug economist, Dr Matsutani. To economise he buys a Vespa and is consequently enrolled into the local Vespa gang led by attractive Talia, who also helps him improve his image. He fancies Mercedes, but how will it pan out?

Content: There is nothing to offend in this outing, but the relentless clichés. Even the porn Mercedes’s husband watches is not pornographic. Mercedes gets drunk a couple of times. Larry stumbles out of his protected employment into the real world and spars with his neighbour who holds a constant yard sale. He goes to college and rides about on his Vespa, and changes his clothing. He also allows his house to be repossessed because of what he has learnt in college, and succeeds as a public speaker in Mercedes’s class.

A View: If you come across a film which is written by, directed by and starred in by an actor you know you will probably be in trouble, and this outing is no exception. It was generally disliked by the critics. Rotten Tomatoes gave it 36%. Its problem was not so much the clichés, but more its completely inoffensive content.  It was beige. Larry had been in the Navy – he must have known how to have a good time, but even riding around on his Vespa with a good looking young woman did not seem to give him a lift. Four of us watched it and only one liked it so 25% from my household. Choose any other Tom Hanks movie before this one.

Additional Info: It is said that when a couple of fans complained to Tom Hanks about this movie he gave then their money back.

About Victor R Gibson

Author of this site three technical books and two novels


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