A quirky coming-of-age comedy. 3/5 stars
This bizarre film has the contrived set-up to end them all. Well-mannered 18-year-old Taylor (Nick Robinson) has a heart ailment (paroxysmal atrial tachycardia) and shuns any form of excitement that might trigger his condition.
Then he encounters Krystal (Rosario Dawson), an ex-hooker-stripper-junkie-alcoholic with a 16-year-old son (Jacob Latimore) in a wheelchair, and falls for her at first sight. To woo her, he pretends to be in AA and adopts the persona of a swaggering biker.
Director William H Macy throws in even more kinks and quirks - including Krystal's vengeful ex (rapper Tip 'T.I.' Harris) and Taylor's well-heeled but dysfunctional family (Macy plays Taylor's professor dad and his real-life wife, Felicity Huffman, plays Taylor's poet mum).
The resulting farce is definitely overcooked and messy, but the cast gives it charm and brio all the same, making for entertaining viewing.
A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.
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