Anywhere But Here Review

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A young woman is uprooted and dragged to Hollywood by her starstruck mother.


Thought Absolutely Fabulous was good? Well, think how much better it would be if the concept was relocated to Hollywood, blown up onto the big screen and played straight! Of course, you may think, with some good reason, that this is a terrible idea - in which case you would be advised to leave Anywhere But Here very much alone.

Based on Mona Simpson's novel, the film opens on the road as flighty cigar-chomping mom Adele August (Sarandon) drags reluctant daughter Ann (Portman) away from their small town roots to the bright lights of Hollyweird. Adele's ill-thought-out gameplan involves getting her sprog a film role and bagging herself a rich husband. Unfortunately, bookworm Ann has less than no interest in becoming a star, while all the suitably wealthy hunks turn out to be ratfink bastards. As a result, the pair spend their time moving from one grotty apartment to another and bursting into tears like it was going out of fashion - and after the first hour or so you will sincerely hope that it is.

Indeed, although the acting is pretty faultless - particularly from Portman - it is almost impossible to believe that this has been directed by the man responsible for the finely-honed likes of Smoke and Blue In The Face.

Mawkishly sentimental, plot-free and downright unamusing, the result should nevertheless prove a big hit with the beleagured parents of teenage kids - in turn demonstrating once again to the kids themselves that old people just haven't got a clue.