I spent part of Valentine’s Day watching “The Rewrite” with my lovely wife, and it proved to be a perfect combination of romance and inspiration — but perhaps not in the traditional sense.
The movie focuses on Keith Michaels, played by the always charming Hugh Grant. Michaels is an Oscar-winning screenwriter who created a one-hit wonder, and ever since, he’s been struggling to keep his street cred and enough money in the bank. In the hopes of finding something to do, his agent finds him a screenwriting teaching job at Binghampton University in New York (a real college, by the way). He starts off hating his job and hating his life, but the students — one in particular, played by Marisa Tomei — show him the error of his ways.
From a critical standpoint, I expected more from a movie about screenwriting. It’s a pretty predictable plot buoyed by its great cast; Grant and Tomei are joined by J.K. Simmons of “Whiplash” and Allison Janney, who starred with Simmons in “Juno”. However, one aspect that I appreciated was constant reference to classic movies, including “Marty” — at points I wanted to be in Michaels’ class and chiming in on the conversation.
Moreover, “The Rewrite” referenced a previous Justin’s Jobs topic: “Walking Distance” from “The Twilight Zone”. Michaels tears up when he watches the scene in which the father tells his son that he’s been looking backwards for too long; it’s time to start looking forward. A classic message for the ages.
Overall, we enjoyed “The Rewrite”. It’s a lovable movie about finding and re-finding your passions, as well as keeping an open mind to new experiences and new people. In that spirit, it’s never too late to “rewrite” your game plan and live in the moment.