Acting under the cover of a Hollywood producer scouting a location for a science fiction film, a CIA agent launches a dangerous operation to rescue six Americans in Tehran during the U.S. hostage crisis in Iran in 1980.
Monty Wildhorn, an alcoholic novelist of Westerns, has lost his drive. His nephew pushes him to Summer in quiet Bell Isle. He begrudgingly befriends a newly single mom and her 3 girls who help him find the inspiration to write again.
British retirees travel to India to take up residence in what they believe is a newly restored hotel. Less luxurious than its advertisements, the Marigold Hotel nevertheless slowly begins to charm in unexpected ways.
Until he was downsized, affable, amiable Larry Crowne (Hanks) was a superstar team leader at the big-box company where he's worked since his time in the Navy. Underwater on his mortgage and unclear on what to do with his suddenly free days, Larry heads to his local college to start over. There he becomes part of a colorful community of outcasts, also-rans and the overlooked all trying to find a better future for themselves...often moving around town in a herd of scooters. In his public-speaking class, Larry develops an unexpected crush on his teacher Mercedes Tainot (Roberts), who has lost as much passion for teaching as she has for her husband. The simple guy who has every reason to think his life has stalled will come to learn an unexpected lesson: when you think everything worth having has passed you by, you just might discover your reason to live. Written by
The fictional "U-Mart" where Larry works is actually a K-Mart. Based on the color scheme and the outtakes on the DVD where Tom Hanks mentions about being able to "find everything they need at K-Mart". See more »
When the motorbike gang drives towards the Frank's restaurant Larry suggested, Larry drives in the front. Immediately afterwards the bikes are seen from the back where Larry's bike is somewhere in the back. See more »
You know, I know what really pisses you off. What is really pissing you off is that I like big knockers and you don't have any!
See more »
The Chinese characters and Soy Sauce translation appear again as the last logo displayed at the end of the credits just before the *fictitious* disclaimer. See more »
While I was scrolling through the different titles available this weekend, I chanced upon "Larry Crowne". Looked it up on IMDb; not so good - an average of 5/10. Scroll down further and voilà! Written by Tom Hanks himself, gotta see it. And I'm glad I did.
First, let me get the 'acting' part out of the way - It's good. Not mind-blowing, but most certainly good enough to be worth the US$9 weekend price of a movie ticket here in Singapore. The actors were good enough that I felt connected, and that's as good as it ever has to be.
As for the plot - nothing jaw-droppingly complicated and twisted, but then again neither was Forest Gump. And what a big success that movie proved to be. Don't expect character development to blow you away, but it did, at the very least, impress me.
Of course, if you walk into the theater expecting "Harold & Kumar" or "Chuck & Larry" humor, you would most definitely be sorely disappointed. Some others have criticized the film, saying that it had "cheap laughs" at best. Now that isn't necessarily true, because it all depends on what your expectations are.
So hear this - Larry Crowne isn't an all-out-LOL-fest, it's a wholesome film sprinkled with subtle, clever, and thoughtful humor.
In my opinion, this film was an excellent cross-section representation of the sandwiched American Middle-class - too rich to qualify for welfare, too poor to save any money. Most people (outside the United States) wouldn't know the America shown throughout this film - where folks are priced out of their own states, where they attend community colleges that aren't crazy over keg parties and crawling with bikini-straddling blonds, where students have to juggle work and school, where they might have to choose the former over the latter too often.
Hollywood glamorizes the American lifestyle each and every chance it gets, and this film provides a rare glimpse into the real America where most people reside.
All things considered, I would consider this film a feel-good movie, and there's much more to it than meets the eye. If you enjoyed Forest Gump, you'd most likely enjoy this one - even if the feel-goodness sets in slightly more subtly.
One final thing - I've never written a review for any movie before, ever. But I felt that the reviews here (as of 9th July 11) were doing Larry Crowne such injustice that I had to write this to balance it out.
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