One Day (2011)
Dir: Lone Scherfig
It’s nice to see Anne Hathaway with more hair and all her teeth… shame about the accent.
‘One Day’ is an adaptation of the novel of the same name by David Nicholls. It tells of two students in 1988, Emma and Dexter (Anne Hathaway and Jim Sturgess) at the university of Edinburgh who have met through mutual friends before but not made much impression on each other, however on their graduation night they get along and end up going back to her place. However, what was a failed one-night stand, becomes a close friendship, and we see brief glimpses of their lives on that same day of July 15th for more than 20 of the following years, as their circumstances change and they enjoy varying levels of closeness.
Funnily enough, the same day idea works very well. It helps keep the film out of the danger of getting too bogged down in one particular event in their lives, and successfully dips in and out just enough to catch the viewer up very quickly some years, and linger for more interesting developments in others.
Some of the highlights include seeing Dexter go off travelling to find himself, and finding that he’s distinctly unlikable (for a while). There are also other characters that pop up in certain years, such as Rafe Spall as Emma’s workmate and then boyfriend, who is a laughable but unfunny aspiring comedian. Romola Garai also has quite a part as Dexter’s very posh girlfriend who has no sense of humour at all, plus she comes complete with the most unbearably pompous family.
It was greatly discussed, especially in Britain, that Anne Hathaway’s supposed ‘Yorkshire’ accent is really very poor. I think it comes across especially badly considering that she’s acting next to real British actors. I’m not sure that her regional roots were an aspect of the book that needed keeping as there’s no mention of her coming from Yorkshire, so I don’t know why they didn’t just sacrifice the difficult accent for Anne Hathaway doing something more generic English which is what she sounds more like for the majority of the film.
This is probably what most people would describe as a date movie. However, as a single man in his 20’s watching it on my own, I will happily admit that I enjoyed it very much.
Click on the poster above for the trailer.