Little Manhattan (PG)
Time Out says
Tue Jul 4 2006Coming from the co-producer of ‘The Wonder Years’ and starring actors from ‘The West Wing’ and ‘Sex and the City’, this pre-teen romance has a televisual feel – but that doesn’t mean it isn’t any good. As lovelorn 11-year-old New Yorker Gabe, Josh Hutcherson strikes the right balance between endearing and humorously self-deprecating, narrating his summer-long crush on girl-next-door Rosemary (Charlie Ray) with the focus on familiar adolescent faux pas. While anxious to hide these unfamiliar new feelings from friends and family, he’s keen to communicate them to Rosemary. But how?
Gentle laughs ensue in this relatively observant comedy. Some scenes and themes fall short – Gabe’s early crying fit, his obsession with a TV karate star – but the film makes good sport of his parents’ living circumstances: although separated, Leslie (Cynthia Nixon) and Adam (Bradley Whitford) still live together for practical reasons, trying to avoid each other while maintaining an amicable façade (not so easy when Leslie has dates coming to the door). Their situation provides a constant reminder that love doesn’t always last, although it isn’t immune to the strain of simplistic sentimentality running through the film. Still, with its pleasantly flawed characters and healthy humour, this is an intimate, charming and funny reminder of the pains of first love.
Author: Anna Smith
Fri Jul 7, 2006