Goldcrest Pictures, Gigi Productions, Mint Pictures,

Freddie Highmore, Emma Roberts, Michael Angarano, Elizabeth Reaser, Sam Robards, Rita Wilson, Alicia Silverstone, Blair Underwood, Sasha Spielberg

George Zinavoy(Freddy Highmore) is one of the teens that seems to have no focus. He’s just skating by doing the least possible to get by. He’s obviously got smarts, but doesn’t have the impetus to use them. He wears the ever present trench coat, and tries to blend into the background. Obviously his mother has her own issues. She’s in a relationship with a guy whose business is failing, and she’s losing everything trying to hold on to him and help him out. But when George gets a chance to be friends with Sally (Emma Roberts) he jumps into it with both feet. They find a connection over similar circumstances, but decide to remain platonic friends. George is in trouble in school again, and may not be able to graduate, so the principal introduces him (and Sally) to an artist alumni Dustin, (Michael Angarano) a successful painter, and he is a guide to George into finding out what is really important to him, but distractions cause George to once again resort to just getting by, and he may not be able to graduate after all.

This is an interesting film. George is like many teens today, who seem to have this fatalistic view of life where nothing is worth anything, and just getting by is truly an art. George gets a chance with Sally, but is afraid to pursue it. Then when he decides it’s worth it, the chance has passed. It’s the same with school. By the time he decides it’s worth it, the chance has passed, and he finds himself in a really tough bind. He loves art, but doesn’t know what to do with it, and if he tries, he may fail, so he lets that slide. That’s how many of us do with just doing the least we have to do to get by. This is a film of lost chances.

The acting is solid. It’s not outstanding, and the script is, like the theme of the movie, just getting by. It’s not a classic work of art, but for the film that it is, it’s just right. I enjoyed watching this film, and it was interesting as I went trhough it, but it’s not extremely memorable. I think it’s ironic that the theme is “just getting by” and the film seems to do the exact same thing. Either it’s lazy on the part of the filmmakers, or it’s a brilliant strategy in itself. I’m really not sure which. So I rate this film right down the middle, as it seems appropriate. Emma Roberts does a fine job. I know her dad, actor Eric Roberts is very proud of her, and she is one of the highlights of the film. Alicia Silverstone plays a teacher. She’s really wasted in this film. She only has a few scenes, and they are not significant. I think it’s an attempt to attach another known name to the project, but her effort is just one more example of “The Art of Getting By”.

EdG – EdsReview Dot Com – A Movie Review Blog



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