ABC Film Challenge – Romance – R – The Rewrite (2014)

Director: Marc Lawrence

Writer: Marc Lawrence (Screenplay)

Starring: Hugh Grant, Marisa Tomei, Bella Heathcote, JK Simmons, Chris Elliott, Allison Janney

 

Plot: An Oscar-winning writer in a slump leaves Hollywood to teach screenwriting at a college on the East Coast, where he falls for a single mom taking classes there.

 

There may be spoilers the rest of the review

 

Verdict: Solid Romantic Comedy

 

Story: The Rewrite starts as Oscar-Winning screenwriter Keith Michaels (Grant) has been struggling to get his new ideas to sale, in need of money he travels across the country to Binghampton to work as a teacher at a university teaching screenwriting.

Arriving in the dead-end town Keith instantly wants to get away but his charm helps him make an impact with the fellow teacher’s Dr Leaner (Simmons), Jim Harper (Elliott) and his rival Professor Weldon (Janney).

Keith doesn’t want to do much teaching early on because he believes you can’t teach the skills but he soon learns to love guiding his students including Karen (Heathcote) and elder student Holly (Tomei) as he learns and finds inspiration for his own writing woes.

 

Thoughts on The Rewrite

 

Characters/PerformanceKeith Michaels is a down on his luck screenwriter whose can’t find any work in Hollywood and must take a teaching job, this job gives Keith the chance to refocus on his own life, career and learn from his mistakes, Keith is self-centred character that evolves as the story unfolds. Holly is the elder student wanting to improve herself, she offers the friendship Keith needs as she has a different worldly experience. Karen is the student that Keith starts dating and ends up learning the hard way how she can get what she wants. Dr Learner, Professor Weldon and Jim Harper all offer us up different kinds of teachers you would find in a university.

Performance wise, Hugh Grant gives the performance he is known for, slightly smug full of himself but he does this so well. Marisa Tomei is good in her role to showing how she can be a glimmer of light in any role she plays. The rest of the cast are all good with their roles with the students all being unique and elder cast members all being good mix for Hugh Grant performance.

StoryThe story focuses on one man that has lost his spark creatively and must turn to teaching and he goes on a journey to discover how he can help guide the next generation of screenwriters. This shows us how people can always teach and learn from life and guide people. This is an enjoyable story to follow.

Comedy/RomanceThe comedy comes with plenty of references to movies but isn’t a laugh a minute. The romance side of the film is what mostly gets Keith into trouble and ends up not working the way it should do.

SettingsThe idea of putting a ‘celebrity’ figure into a small town setting is a tried and tested formula and one that works here to help the story flow.

Final ThoughtsThis is a true Hugh Grant rom com, he plays the character we know and love to watch in a new setting with the same results. This is enjoyable though because we do get to learn life lessons.

 

Overall: Solid and enjoyable story to learn from.

Rating

 

 

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