The Art of Getting By
- Kaleem Aftab
- 22 August 2011
‘110 billion humans have walked the planet since the dawn of time, and none of them have made it.’ So begins schoolboy George Zinavoy’s narration in this melancholic teen comedy with heavy echoes of Cameron Crowe’s Say Anything. George (Freddie Highmore) is the school loner who lands hot rich girl Sally (Emma Roberts). Things go well and then deteriorate, so he must win her back. You know the drill.
British teen actor Highmore does a sterling job of playing a Manhattan-based senior year high school student, clearly having done his homework with the accent. He captures the insecurity and confusion of those complicated years when youthful minds turn to the idea of finding a vocation. Another nice touch is that Sally is more attainable than most of the bitchy rich girls from the John Hughes alumni and you can see why George falls for her.
Director Gavin Wiesen also shows that confusion does not end at school. George’s art mentor Dustin (Michael Angarano) – an art mentor to George – is just as confused about girls and his ability to make a living. This is a film of slight but wry observation.
General release from Fri 2 Sep.