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Film Review of Larry Crowne: A Beautiful Teacher with a Husband Who Cheats and a Handsome Student Who Loves Almost Everything

Losing a wife, job and house in quick order can be devastating. But becoming an A+ student with tons of friends can make up for life’s disappointments. Events will have a particularly charming, winsome turn when “Larry Crowne” also finds true love.

theatrical release poster (Fair Use, via Wikimedia Commons)


Comedy, drama, and romance abound in Larry Crowne by writers Tom Hanks and Nia Vardalos; producers Gary Goetzman and Tom Hanks; and director Tom Hanks. Philippe Rousselot, Alan Cody, and James Newton Howard handle cinematography, editing, and music. Filming showcases California.

The film lasts 99 minutes. It was distributed by Universal Pictures. It was released on July 1, 2011 in the United States.

The movie begins with Larry Crowne (Tom Hanks) in the employee break bay. It is the Friday executives Avery (Sy Richardson), Cox (Dale Dye) and Jack (Rob Riggle) choose employee-of-the-month. Larry learns of his dismissal instead of his tenth award.

UMart has a policy of unlimited opportunities despite age, gender, race or sexual orientation. According to management, Larry’s lack of a post-secondary education limits advancement and therefore violates policy.

Despite almost 20 years with the Navy and 3+ years with UMart, Larry cannot find a job. He has an outstanding loan from buying out ex-wife Denise’s share in the house at 8565 Derby Court. His request to renegotiate the loan is rejected by bank officer Wilma Q. Gammelgaand (Rita Wilson).

Neighbor Lamar (Cedric the Entertainer) does not have to work. He and wife B’ella (Taraji P. Henson) hold yard sales. He is a successful “Spin-to-win $500,000” participant. Lamar tells Larry to enroll at East Valley Community College.

Larry exchanges his flat-screen TV for Lamar‘s blue scooter. He is directed by EVCC Dean Dave Busik (Holmes Osborne) to take Economics and Speech. While parking, he meets Talia (Gugu Mbatha-Raw).

Talia has the birth name Kathryn. She invites Larry to join boyfriend Dell Gordo‘s (Wilmer Valderrama) scooter gang. She is in Economics with Larry, whom she renames Lance Corona. She makes Larry’s furnishings Feng Shui-friendly. She reinvents Larry’s hairstyle and look since she matches him with Speech teacher Mercedes Tainot (Julia Roberts).

Mercy does not like teaching at 8:00 a.m. But she has to allow time for completing a master’s in comparative discourse. Additionally, she needs to escape apartment 325, where husband Dean (Bryan Cranston) surfs porn sites.

Larry gets A+ in Economics and Speech. Through Economics Professor Ed Matsutani (George Takei), Larry learns about residential strategic foreclosures. From Speech, he learns to love Mercy.

Talia drops out of school. She operates Talia’s thrift shop. Larry rents Apartment 7 next door, at 4225 Harbor Street.

The movie ends with Mercy freed of Dean and visiting Larry’s “world’s tiniest” kitchen for French toast since he chooses not to be her student second semester.


Copyright:  Wednesday, October 31, 2012, by Derdriu.




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  1. Posted November 1, 2012 at 8:32 am

    Brilliant Derdriu as always.
    Your posts are always so wonderfuly presented and so well informed.
    Take care and enoy your day.

  2. Posted November 1, 2012 at 8:52 am

    Eddy, The performances are first-rate in this wonderfully romantic comedy. I love the high-quality collaboration realized by Tom, wife Rita, and friends Julia and Nia.
    Respectfully, and with many thanks for visiting, Derdriu

  3. Posted November 2, 2012 at 8:38 am

    Derdriu, Thank you for a superb review of this wonderful romantic comedy, per my request. It’s a heart-warming favorite for me. Including Tom Petty’s “Walls” in the soundtrack was a genial, perfect decision by the talented Mr. Hanks. Tom is irresistible as a truly good guy, and Julia is charming as a jaded dreamer. All others play their parts wonderfully. It must have been inspiring to bring Tom’s cherished project to completion.
    Appreciatively, Stessily

  4. Posted November 2, 2012 at 11:22 am

    Stessily, It’s an honor to write this review per your request since it’s a sparkling, outstanding gem of a movie in terms of everything that it has going for it: superb soundtrack, setting, plot, performances, dialogue, and costumes (I particularly love Julia’s outfits and shoes — and that her character likes to drive barefoot as do I).
    Respectfully, and with many thanks for steering me towards an exceptional film, Derdriu

  5. Posted November 8, 2012 at 7:37 am

    Larry Crowne is a 2011 American romantic comedy film starring Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts. The film was directed by Hanks, who co-wrote its screenplay with Nia VardalosDespite the relaxed, easy chemistry of stars Tom Hanks and Julia Roberts, Larry Crowne is surprisingly bland and conventional.

  6. Posted November 9, 2012 at 9:44 am

    elee, Thank you for visiting and sharing your insights!
    Respectfully, Derdriu

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