Customer Review

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Unimaginative, predictable but worst of all, boring, 28 Nov 2011
This review is from: The Art of Getting By [DVD] (DVD)
The Art of Getting By (TAOGB) is the story of George (Freddie Highmore - Charlie and The Chocolate Factory) - a fatalist teenager struggling to motivate himself to complete his high school diploma. Acutely aware of his own mortality, he finds it difficult to warrant the reasons to complete his trig homework. Rudderless, he bumps into fellow student, Sally (Emma Roberts - It's Kind of a Funny Story) who finds a kindred spirit in him, however his directionless meanderings might just lose him Sally in the end and George sees a reason to motivate himself.

TAOGB is not a bad film inherently, it's well filmed and the roles are well acted by the capable cast. However, it's the story and it's moral that makes TAOGB a truly awful film; falling far-short of an indie-classics such as Juno, literally nothing of interest happens in the entire 84 minute bit. How on earth this script got passed without a rewrite I have no idea. This is nearly an hour-and-a-half of teenage self-indulgence as George wallows in his angst and uncertainty. Somebody really needed to tell this character to 'snap out of it' and that compared to most people, his problems are truly insignificant and he should be thankful for his privileged position. Instead he whinges, complains and is truly ungrateful for what his parents do for him.

The worst part is that George is so alternative (for alternative read; incapable of functioning in society) and he is held up to us a role-model or an independent-spirit, walking his own path (if doodling incessantly in your expensive textbooks is groundbreaking social progress then we are all doomed). This film makes me worry for high school students that will try to emulate George or any of the other socially-awkward-protagonists that Hollywood spews out at us.

Extras: A couple of featurettes, a director commentary by Gavin Wiesen and the theatrical trailer.

Moral lecturing aside; there is no story-progression at all, you could explain the finer intricacies of the plot on the back of a beer mat and lo' and behold, George gets everything right, vindicating his slacker-mentality and further suggesting we should all be a bit more like him. A cliché, boy-meets-girl, coming of age movie. If that's your thing then fair enough, but honestly, I think you'd be richer for the experience having not seen this movie.
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3.9 out of 5 stars (33 customer reviews)
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J. Morris "Josh"
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Location: London

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