September 17, 2009

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My One and Only (PG-13)
Rene Zellweger is a fading princess in search of a white knight in My One and Only, a slight but entertaining road movie.

Anne Devereaux (Zellweger) has a dashing husband, band leader Dan Devereaux (Kevin Bacon), but, as she finds out when she comes home early from an out-of-town vacation, she’s not the only woman being dashed. Certain there’s something better out there for herself, she cleans out their cashbox and leaves the comforts of their Manhattan apartment for points unknown. Accompanying her are her two sons — the fashion-conscious, theater-loving Robbie (Mark Rendall) and the preppy, wary George (Logan Lerman). They set off on a cross-country road trip with Anne attempting to snag a new husband along the way. Military man Harlan (Chris Noth) proves a little too quick to anger, wealthy Charlie (Eric McCormack) dates women a generation younger. This husband-hunting keeps the family on the move — and keeps the boys from putting down roots. Robbie keeps getting the lead (but never the chance to perform) in the school play and George is ripped from a school just as a teacher tells him his writing shows promise.

Movie-of-the-week-ish performances from Zellweger and her slew of men, little capers with predictable outcomes, sudden melodrama — it’s easy to point out what doesn’t work about My One and Only and more difficult to put my finger on what does work. The Mad Men-esque costumes, the jaunty little travelogue, the kind-of charming craziness of Anne — whatever it is, there are qualities to the movie that make it likeable, that kept me engaged even if I didn’t feel terribly impressed.

Ultimately, the movie is saved from complete forgettableness by a little reveal at the end of the film which I didn’t know about going in and I won’t spoil for you here. The final result isn’t a “wow, I didn’t see that coming” more of a “huh, that’s interesting,” a lukewarm description that fits the movie itself. C+

Rated PG-13 for sexual content and language. Directed by Richard Loncraine and written by Charlie Peters, My One and Only is an hour and 30 minutes long and is distributed in limited release by Freestyle Releasing.