Wednesday, May 26, 2010

The Very Thought of You (1998) [PG-13] ***

Martha (Monica Potter) meets Daniel (Tom Hollander) at the Minneapolis airport. She's escaping from a boring, meaningless life, and London is the least expensive foreign destination. Daniel is a successful British record producer returning to London from a business meeting in Minneapolis. Fascinated by the lovely Martha, he buys her a first-class ticket upgrade and a night at an expensive London hotel suite. However, after Martha disembarks at Heathrow airport, she accidentally injures Laurence (Joseph Fiennes) with her luggage cart.  And still later, while she is sightseeing in a London park, Martha meets Frank (Rufus Sewell). So what are the chances that, in a city of ten million people, Martha would meet three men who were all life-long friends, and who would each be irresistibly attracted to her?

Originally titled Martha - Meet Frank, Daniel and Laurence, the film is both highly predictable and totally unbelievable. However, it does have a very British kind of warmth and charm, without any emphasis on sex. With an inventive screenplay by Peter Morgan (Frost/Nixon, Hereafter), and a plot that unfolds both forward in linear time as well as in flashback, this comedic romance smoothly develops the unique personalities of each of the four of the leads, portraying Martha as curious, naive and innocent, Laurence as confused, indecisive and lovesick, and both Daniel and Frank as opportunistic lovers. While this film is not as rewarding as Monica Potter's later romantic comedy I'm With Lucy, if you enjoyed that film, as well as Four Weddings and a Funeral, Love Actually and While You Were Sleeping, you might enjoy The Very Thought of You. 

Labels: comedy, romance   
Internet Movie Database   
Metacritic 43/100   
Tomatometer (critics=33, viewers=61) 

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