Wonder Boys
Movie Review

 

Starring: Michael Douglas, Tobey Maguire, Frances McDormand, Katie Holmes, Paramount, Directed by Curtis Hanson. 3.3.6 R rated [1:48]

Wonder Boys stars Michael Douglas as Grady Tripp, a pot-smoking, middle-aged English professor with one great book behind him and no idea how to finish the follow-up. Ironically, his life is the stuff of a bestseller: his wife has left him, and his lover (Frances McDormand), who just happens to be the boss' wife, is pregnant with his child. Furthermore, James Leer, his freaky star student (Tobey Maguire) and a compulsive liar, has gunned down his lover's blind dog and stolen a priceless jacket once worn by Marilyn Monroe. Compounding his problems are the police, a James Brown clone that claims Grady stole his car, and a wacky editor (Robert Downey Jr.), who's come to town expecting to read a finished copy of Grady's book.

Though Douglas shines as the film's star, a nearly flawless ensemble cast aids him, including Katie Holmes as Hannah Green, a seductive student infatuated with her professor. Threatening to steal the movie is Robert Downey Jr. in the role of Terry Crabtree, Tripp's hedonistic editor. Downey Jr., who completed the role before going to prison, is hilarious in playing up all of Crabtree's excesses.

Fans of Michael Chabon's delightfully entertaining novel will find that the film takes dramatic license with some key points, but screenwriter Steven Kloves and director Curtis Hanson (LA Confidential) do a fine job of maintaining the book's irreverence.
Source: Steve Baltin , drdrew.com/article.asp?id=525 or  www.kids-in-mind.com/w/wonder_boys_2000.htm

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