Staring Renee Zellwegger, Logan Lerman, Kevin Bacon and Chris Noth. Directed by Richard Loncraine.
Rated M (infrequent coarse language). 108 mins.
An entertaining comedy-drama about actor George Hamilton when he was 15? Not likely. But, in fact, here it is. A memoir which, when he recounts it to his class about what he did over the summer vacation, his teacher remarks, 'Surely, exaggerated'. He replies, 'if only...'.
According to this tale, Hamilton's father was band leader, Danny Devereaux, who was a one hit wonder with his song, 'My One and Only' (composed for this film). His mother, Ann, was a 'princess' type who did not know what work was, who glided through life and two marriages constantly repeating 'it will all work out for the best'. Tired of her husband's infidelities, she decides to fend for herself and teenage sons – by looking for a wealthy husband to support them! As they say, she certainly knows how to pick them! There is a broke businessman who wants to borrow from her, a bullying anti-Communist military man, an old flame who is a playboy, a rich man who assumes she is available for sex, a gentle salesman who is certifiable!
The family moves from New York to Boston to Pittsburgh (where she is wrongly arrested in a hotel bar for soliciting), to St Louis and her plain and exasperated sister's house, to LA and the movies.
Renee Zellwegger turns on her charm and glamour for this flibbertygibbet wife and hopeless mother. Kevin Bacon has a cameo as her husband.
The film also depends on Logan Lerman as the serious young George who sees through his mother, realises he must also see through his father and who, by accident, helping his would-be, crocheting brother (Mark Rendall) for his screen test, begins his own film career.
A strong cast of men pass through Ann's life: Steven Weber, Chris Noth, Eric McCormack, David Koecher, Troy Garrity (as a hitchhiker) and Nick Stahl as a sympathetic shy mechanic in Pittsburgh.
The now over-tanned George Hamilton did not turn out quite as serious as the young George in this film - though he executive produced this film. A commendation from the Ecumenical Jury in Berlin, 2009.
Hopscotch Out March 11, 2010
Fr Peter Malone MSC directs the film desk of SIGNIS: the World Association of Catholic Communicators, and is an associate of the Australian Catholic Office for Film & Broadcasting