4.6/10
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The Next Best Thing (2000)

PG-13 | | Comedy, Drama, Romance | 3 March 2000 (USA)
Trailer
2:09 | Trailer
Abbie, tired of failed relationships, has a one-night-stand with her gay friend; they agree to raise the resulting baby together.

Director:

John Schlesinger

Writer:

Tom Ropelewski (as Thomas Ropelewski)
3 wins & 10 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Madonna ... Abbie Reynolds
Rupert Everett ... Robert Whittaker
Benjamin Bratt ... Ben Cooper
Illeana Douglas ... Elizabeth Ryder
Michael Vartan ... Kevin Lasater
Josef Sommer ... Richard Whittaker
Malcolm Stumpf Malcolm Stumpf ... Sam
Lynn Redgrave ... Helen Whittaker
Neil Patrick Harris ... David
Mark Valley ... Cardiologist
Suzanne Krull ... Annabel
Stacy Edwards ... Finn
John Carroll Lynch ... Abbie's Lawyer
Fran Bennett Fran Bennett ... Judge Tracey Bennett
Ricki Lopez Ricki Lopez ... Angel
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Storyline

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

Taglines:

He was smart, handsome and single. When her biological clock was running out, he was... the next best thing. See more »

Genres:

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:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English | French

Release Date:

3 March 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Red Curtain See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$5,870,387, 5 March 2000

Gross USA:

$14,990,582

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$24,362,772
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The house that Rupert Everett stays at is actually Cecil B. DeMille's old house. See more »

Goofs

Near the end of the film, when Robert is talking to Ben across the street of Sam's school, Robert's head keeps changing positions between shots. In one shot he is looking toward Ben and in another shot he is looking at the school, then it goes back to the other shot when hes looking at Ben. See more »

Quotes

Abbie: I have something to tell you.
Robert: Is it bigger than a breadbox?
Abbie: Heh, not yet.
See more »

Connections

References Top Hat (1935) See more »

Soundtracks

If Everybody Looked The Same
Written by Andrew Cato (as A. Cato), Tom Findlay (as T. Findlay), Eugene Record (as E. Record), Quinton Joseph (as Q. Joseph), James 'Jay Dee' Yancey (as J. Yancey), Ali Shaheed Muhammad (as A. Muhammad), Q-Tip (as K. Fareed), Phife Dawg (as M. Taylor), Steve Swallow (as S. Swallow)
Performed by Groove Armada
Courtesy of Jive Electro Records
By special arrangement of Zomba Records Limited
See more »

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User Reviews

She still can't act
15 April 2002 | by LittleOracleSee 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.


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