It’s easy to joke about Daniel Radcliffe (not in a mean way but like you would an adorable little brother). Still, we’ll all have to stop now, because Harry Potter is all grown-up—and he can act. Radcliffe is lovely in this hipsterish rom-com, playing a med-school dropout who falls in love with a girl (Zoe Kazan) at a house party in Toronto. They bond over fridge magnets. She leaves it until the walk home to tell him her relationship status: “My boyfriend will be wondering what happened to me.” The rest of the film is a will-they-won’t-they (what do you think?) update of When Harry Met Sally. They go on friend-dates, play Ping-Pong, trade flirty banter, some of it brilliant, some of it meh (“A pickle jar is like a tomb for cucumbers”).
For Radcliffe, it’s your classic Hugh Grant role: bumbling Brit in a suit jacket. But for a kid who grew up in public, he does a convincing job of playing a normal guy. (It helps that he’s no one’s idea of leading-man handsome and practically a foot shorter than everyone else.) There’s a great scene in a diner where it hits him that he’s losing his girl. As his face collapses, you can see his heart breaking. By the end, you’re rooting for him to get his happy ending. The trouble with What If is its flood of overfamiliar setups: boy reveals true feelings in a best man’s speech; boy catches glimpse of his one true love in a fitting room. And someone really should ban skinny-dipping from movies. The less said about our two leads’ pretentiously picked names—Wallace and Chantry—the better. Not even J.K. Rowling herself could have dreamed those up for a pair of know-it-all wizards.
|Release date:||Friday August 8 2014|
Cast and crew
Average User Rating
4 / 5
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What happens when you take away the wand from the wizard? AMAZING THINGS! Daniel Radcliffe transitions seamlessly from his Harry Potter action role to a witty and adorable twenty-something looking for love from the unattainable Chantry (Zoe Kazan). I will say the chemistry between these two wasn't exactly reminiscent of Romeo and Juliette or Brad and Angelina, but the strength and humor of the supporting characters (Adam Driver, Mackenzie Davis, and Megan Park) rounds out the film perfectly. The dialogue is snappy and the story line provokes the age old question: can men and women really just be friends? The answer will not shock you, but this film will keep you entertained and enchanted until the credits roll.