Mr Right

Mr Right

***1/2

Reviewed by: Jennie Kermode

Pitched at the metrosexual romantic comedy market by being billed as the story of a young woman who makes the mistake of introducing her ideal man to her gay friends, this isn't really just the story of one troubled relationship, but of several. A skilfully crafted ensemble piece, it takes a witty and affectionate look at love, lust and romance in 21st century London.

Romantic comedy is always a difficult thing to write because, like a new love, it has to feel fresh and exciting whilst exploring what for most of us is familiar territory. In this case, that's compounded by all the clich├ęs associated with gay life, but Mr Right handles these with deft assurance by admitting that, yes, some of them really are true, at least for this group of friends, and by running with that rather than apologising for them. The result is that whilst at times we may feel we've been here before, the overall impression is of something solid and believable, and there's room to explore the characters of those involved.

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Early on, the audience could be forgiven for failing to tell many of these characters apart. They all work in the same kind of jobs, mostly to do with the media; they visit the same bars, read the same newspapers, and wear the same designer clothes. But over time, strong personalities and intricately observed conflicts emerge.

There's Emma (Lucy Jules), the straight woman with hardly any straight friends who fears being sidelined as a fag hag and is sometimes treated dismissively, but who, socially, is a perfect fit. There's William (the excellent Rocky Marshall), trying to do the right thing by his nine-year-old daughter despite the destructive effect that her jealousy has on his relationships. There's Tom(David Morris), the artist who makes a living by attaching the word 'gay' to his work in as many ways as possible and selling it to straight people for thousands of pounds, though he admits it's crap. There's Alex ( Luke de Woolfson), generationally adrift in his early twenties, unable to fit in with his cultured older friends but gradually learning to assert his own identity.

All of these people are looking for love but they're also looking for other things in life - although they might not know it. As a consequence, this develops into a much more mature and thoughtful film than its premise might suggest.

Perhaps there's just one Mr Right out there whom everyone's looking for, but it's the people and the opportunities they find along the way that really matter. Or perhaps there are multiple Mr Rights and they've all been combined in a film which never settles for long in one place but will bring something a little different to every viewer. At any rate, it's a welcome change from the standard romantic comedy in which the heroine gets her happy ending and waltzes out of the life of her still-lonely gay best friend.

Reviewed on: 26 Nov 2009
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A young woman makes a mistake by introducing her ideal man to her gay friends, but they too have plenty of heartaches to deal with.
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Director: David Morris, Jacqui Morris

Writer: David Morris

Starring: Luke de Woolfson, Lucy Jules, Rocky Marshall, David Morris

Year: 2006

Runtime: 95 minutes

BBFC: 12 - Age Restricted

Country: UK

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