Little Manhattan Review

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Two 11-year-olds find love in New York City, as a young boy charts the progress of his crush.


Young love blossoms in modern-day Manhattan, but don’t vomit just yet: this observational teen comedy has just enough sass to win over wary adults. Much like TV’s The Wonder Years (which director Mark Levin also story-edited and produced), it’s narrated by 11 year-old Gabe (Josh Hutcherson), who recalls the summer he started to look at schoolmate Rosemary (Charlie Ray) in a new light. Romantic obstacles include her flowergirl duties and his shyness over kissing, and by using Gabe’s POV, this depicts the uncertainties, agonies and ironies of first love with accuracy, affection and wry humour. Some points are laboured, and the build-up of Gabe’s crush is overlong, but this remains an unexpectedly enjoyable little film that should have done better at the US box office.

Not quite as nauseous as its plot might suggest, Little Manhattan is sassy as well as sweet.