"The Art of Getting By"

The Art of Getting By is yet another movie where the trailer is better than the film itself, although late in the second half the film does redeem itself. Its trailer is fast-paced, witty, and makes the movie look like a typical teen romance film, which of course sold me instantly (I am a big rom-com fan). However, the film itself ends up being a bit slow.

George (Freddie Highmore, "The Spiderwick Chronicles") is used to slacking off at his NYC high school, but now he's a senior, and his teachers and the principal have informed him that if he continues to be a slacker, he won't graduate. He meets Sally (Emma Roberts, "Scream 4," and Julia's niece) when she is having a forbidden smoke on the school roof, and when a teacher busts them, he pretends it was him that was smoking. George and Sally quickly become friends, both of them misfits in different ways, but George wants more out of the relationship, and Sally doesn't, or so she thinks at first.

The movie dragged a lot in the first half, although the characters are very endearing. Roberts and Highmore have good chemistry together, but the pace of the movie was not nearly as frenetic and exciting as the trailer leads you to believe. Near the second half, the pace picks up a bit, and the ending is very good; I liked it a lot.

Maybe see this movie. It's only one hour and twenty minutes long, thereabouts, so if you can deal with the first half being slow, you might like it. It was definitely different than the typical "teen romance" movie, though the trailer leads you to believe differently, and it took a different spin on it. Although every time I see Freddie Highmore I think of him at age 13 or so when he was in Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, he's grown up to be quite a good actor, and he and Emma Roberts are what help keep this film moving during the second half.

The Art of Getting By is in theaters today, June 17th.

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