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Dolby Digital 5.0 English
Subtitles: English, English for the hearing impaired, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Finnish
Lazily directed by Oscar-winner John Schlesinger (Midnight Cowboy) with an eye towards his actors' muscle tone rather than characterisations (even the kid does yoga), the faults in The Next Best Thing aren't solely on the shoulders of its miscast stars, but rather the painfully inept screenplay by Tom Ropelewski (Look Who's Talking Now). With cardboard dialogue that sounds like bad first-draft material--including wailing by Madonna about how she can't find a man (ha!) and a gym-buffed Everett complaining about gay male body image (double ha!)--the movie stumbles from domestic comedy to custody-suit tragedy when it takes a bizarre left turn in the third act. Any statements about new definitions of family are buried underneath these dubious events, which (of course) provide teary courtroom outbursts for both leads. Everett has a quick way with a one-liner, and Madonna is more relaxed than she's ever been in a film, but Schlesinger just tosses them in front of the camera with no help whatsoever; the supporting cast, including Lynn Redgrave, Neil Patrick Harris, and Illeana Douglas, is also left to flounder inexplicably. There's a thoughtful and provocative movie to be made about gay parents, but The Next Best Thing certainly isn't it. --Mark Englehart, Amazon.com
It's ok if there is nothing else to do but the acting is poor and the storyline jumps 5 then 10 years, could have been so much better!Published 17 months ago by Miss S J Harris
i was intrigued at this film and i got it and ok it wasn't the best but it was Madonna.
this one is mainly for fans of her not for a newcomer.
I really enjoyed this film a lot! I don't understand why the rating isn't better! I think the friendship in the film is very believable and I could really identify because of... Read morePublished on 18 Nov. 2011 by Kim Zwolle
This film has suffered very, very bad publicity and very, very bad reviews. But if you choose to see it open-minded, you might just get to like this mess. Read morePublished on 6 Jun. 2006 by Nikola
In this attempt to illustrate modern family configurations, 'The Next Best Thing' had a bit too much of an agenda for me. Read morePublished on 29 Dec. 2005 by Kurt Messick
Lots of people have said that the film is not very well thought out but you can look at it that way or you can say it was extremely well thought out, which it was. Read morePublished on 26 Aug. 2004
Tsk! This film is almost as bad as Swept Away. Once again the script is terrible and once again Madonna cannot act. Purely dreadful. Read morePublished on 24 July 2004 by E. Payne
An enormously creaky movie. It's one fascination - why is Madonna's face so obviously spotlit in her closeups?Published on 18 Jan. 2004 by A. Bristow