Thursday, August 02, 2012

How to Meet Girls from a Distance

 Meet Toby. He's our lead character and he hasn't had much luck with girls. Indeed, trying to date a girl who turned out to be a lesbian and  already in a relationship actually resulted in physical injury. As a result he tries to do a bit of research before asking a girl out, and this is one of the themes of the film - how much research is prudent and how much is just plain creepy?

As our film commences, Toby's Mum has paid for him to have some sessions with a dating coach, Carl Stewart. Carl is what you'd get if you crossed Rhys Darby with Tim Balme and has to be seen to be believed and is probably a reason in his own right to see this movie. Carl puts Toby under some pressure to go on dates, starting with Carl's own receptionist and that date goes particularly badly. Fortunately Toby  has comes across a girl he actually  wants to date, so puts in some research and discovers she already has a boyfriend. Undeterred, he sets to work to undermine her existing relationship so he can ask her out. You'll need to go and watch to find out what happens, but the path to true love doesn't run smoothly.

As you may have gathered by now, this film is a comedy and it has elements of farce. It's quite sweet but also slightly uncomfortable - and part of this is how close you feel to the characters and the setting. Toby is a bit of wierdo but only a little bit. In many ways, he's just a perfectly nice chap. And since this film is shot in Wellington he seems like someone you might meet out and about.

We were at the world premiere of How to Meet Girls from a Distance on Sunday afternoon, which was sold out. Since large numbers of the cast and their friends and families were in attendance and the Paramount  doesn't seat that many (especially since they've just got new seats which take up more room than the old ones) this doesn't really say all that much about how popular this movie will be ultimately. 

I'd say that if you like your romantic comedies formulaic then you won't like this one. But if you like them a bit quirky and you have some fondness for the underdog and the faintly ludicrous then you should enjoy it thoroughly.

Anne's rating: 3.5/5, Ian's rating: 3/5

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