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The Next Best Thing (2000)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 3 March 2000 (USA)
2:11 | Trailer

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Abbie, tired of failed relationships, has a one-night-stand with her gay friend; they agree to raise the resulting baby together.



(as Thomas Ropelewski)
3 wins & 9 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Elizabeth Ryder
Richard Whittaker
Malcolm Stumpf ...
Helen Whittaker
Abbie's Lawyer
Fran Bennett ...
Judge Tracey Bennett
Ricki Lopez ...


A comedy-drama about best friends - one a straight woman, Abbie, the other a gay man, Robert - who decide to have a child together. Five years later, Abbie falls in love with a straight man and wants to move away with her and Robert's little boy Sam, and a nasty custody battle ensues. Written by TexGuy <madonnafan@webtv.net>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Best friends make the best mistakes. See more »


Comedy | Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic elements, sexual content, partial nudity and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:






Release Date:

3 March 2000 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

The Red Curtain  »

Box Office


$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$5,870,387 (USA) (3 March 2000)


$14,983,572 (USA) (19 May 2000)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (TV)

Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


During rehearsals, Rupert Everett accidentally bumped into John Schlesinger. Schlesinger fell and chipped his coccyx. See more »


Abbie is riding in a car. Seen from the front, her headrest is missing, but from the rear, it's present. See more »


Sam: Daddy, are you a 'faggot'?
Robert: Where did you hear that word?
Sam: Kyle told it to me
Robert: And did Kyle tell you what it means?
Sam: Yes.
Robert: Well, what does it mean?
Sam: It's when two boys kiss and they go to the opera.
See more »


References Meet Me in St. Louis (1944) See more »


Written by Joanna Stevens and David Norland
Performed by Solar Twins
Courtesy of Maverick Recording Company
Produced by David Norland (uncredited)
See more »

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User Reviews

She still can't act
15 April 2002 | by (Chicago) – See all my reviews

I had high hopes for this -- really, I did. I thought it would be a sweet, charming and tugging-at-the-heartstrings comedy. But I was TOO hopeful.

Story in one sentence: two best friends (one gay, one straight) end up in bed together, have a son, raise him together, everything hunky-dory until she wants to marry someone else and the little family gets screwed up.

Let's talk about what's the worst: the script, hands down. Everything is so spliced in or cut out it's just terrible. The transitions are so choppy, that we barely have enough time to understand the undeveloped characters -- they're just thrown at us and next thing you know, it's years later. It's unrealistic and it's too fictional to really understand or get into. Madonna is suffering from never finding Mr. Right, Rupert is the gay buddy that "somewhat" turns into the bad guy and poor Benjamin is just caught in the middle. We don't know WHO to hate in this movie -- that's pretty much the hard part. Everyone is in the bad guy role, they just don't fit it due to the fact they all need sympathy.

As for Madonna, yes, it's obvious she took lessons. The problem would be that she is way too conscious of the camera. Her husband commented once that she needs to let the director direct -- and I think that's a huge problem with her performance. She is just "too beautiful" in this movie. I mean, she's supposed to be sobbing her eyes out and she looks up and is all glistening and pretty. Sorry, but in order for me to believe her I want to see it on her face that she's worried -- you know, red eyes, puffy cheeks, smeared makeup -- the works. Madonna had too much creative control in this and it's obvious. Her expressions don't fit her tone of voice either; she seems to blink consciously and doesn't have much expression -- but hey, close your eyes and listen to her and you'll see that she's making progress.

All in all, a good storyline put to a bad script and bad performances. Anyone who tells you this is a great movie is obviously a star-struck Madonna fan.

30 of 39 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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