Try-hard 'comedy' falls flat
In last year's film Larry Crowne, tough economic times combined with a company "restructuring" policy land middle-aged worker Larry Crowne (Tom Hanks) jobless. Actually, he's released from his duties at UMart (basically famous US superstore Wal-Mart with different brand colours), because he lacks a degree.
At the behest of his neighbour Lamar (Cedric the Entertainer), Larry enrols in a local community college, taking courses in economics and communication. At first he's like a fish out of water, finding it difficult to adapt to the completely new experience of college life.
But soon things begin to turn around for him: he becomes friends with a free-spirited scooter gang, led by Talia (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), begins to manage his finances, begins to open up, revealing a lighter (hipper) side; and, in the process, he helps Professor Mercedes Tainot (Julia Roberts), who's having marital problems of her own, regain the motivation to teach.
The problem with Larry Crowne is that it is a mediocre comedy masking as a romance. It spends too much time trying to be a feel-good film about a belatedly coming-of-age character whose exemplary actions are meant to inspire.
What we actually have is a forgettable film about a not-very-interesting middle-aged guy who goes to college - and (sort of) falls in love. Not deserving enough of your full attention.
YP Rating: 3/5