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Originally published Thursday, September 4, 2014 at 3:05 PM

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‘The Longest Week’: Despite stars’ charms, it comes up short

A movie review of “The Longest Week,” a droll, lightly charming New York romance starring Jason Bateman and Olivia Wilde. It received 2.5 stars out of 4.


McClatchy-Tribune News Service

Movie Review ★★½  

‘The Longest Week,’ with Jason Bateman, Olivia Wilde, Billy Crudup, Jenny Slate, Tony Roberts. Written and directed by Peter Glanz. 86 minutes. Rated PG-13 for sexual content and smoking. Pacific Place.

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The considerable charms of Jason Bateman and Olivia Wilde get a considered workout in the lightly charming New York romance “The Longest Week.”

It’s a droll comedy, with a droll narration (by Larry Pine), set among the idle affluent of Manhattan.

Bateman stars as Conrad Valmont, a 40ish man-child lost in “the distractions of wealth.” He lives in the family hotel, rides with the family chauffeur and spends his huge family allowance.

Then his globe-trotting parents decide to divorce and neither of them wants to support him. He’s evicted, penniless, with only a pricey haircut, tailored clothes and a motor scooter to his name.

His shrink (Tony Roberts) is worried. Conrad is shallow, obsessed with physical beauty and dead set against the idea of working for a living. How will he survive?

Conrad’s “Longest Week” begins with a first-time-in-decades ride on the subway, which takes him to his artist-friend Dylan (Billy Crudup). The lovelorn Dylan will put him on the sofa for a few days. He nags and nags Conrad to not make a play for his potential new girlfriend, Beatrice (Olivia Wilde).

Who could resist Beatrice, a child of wealth, a model, a Bach fan who fancies hers as a life of virtue. She’s a vegetarian.

Over the course of Conrad’s week, he endures an attempted setup with a pretentious grad student (Jenny Slate). He tries to reach his parents, falls in love and hides his impending poverty with style.

Writer-director Peter Glanz doesn’t hammer his jokes, relying on the cast to wring charm out of characters and situations. But there just aren’t enough moments that pay dividends.



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