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Rom-com with a real feel-good factor.

MAN UP (15) ..... THIS romantic comedy is a sweet, funny and charming tale of boy-meets-wrong-girl-butdoesn't-realise-it, filmed on location in London.

Directed at a brisk pace by Ben Palmer, who helmed The Inbetweeners Movie, this contrived tale of mistaken identity strips away most of the gross-out interludes that have become de rigueur for the genre.

New York City-born writer and actress Lake Bell pulls off a flawless English accent as the hapless heroine.

She sparks a lively on-screen partnership with Simon Pegg, so we root for their unlikely lovebirds to overcome the obstacles that screenwriter Tess Morris flings in their path.

The film opens with thirtysomething singleton Nancy (Bell) trying to convince herself to "be more deviant... engage with life".

She retreats from a party full of potential suitors to spend the evening alone in a hotel room.

It's a blind |and Lake Bell in "Put yourself out there," suggests her happily partnered sister, Elaine (Sharon Horgan).

On a train to London, Nancy meets a girl called Jessica (Ophelia Lovibond), who is meeting a blind date.

Jessica will recognise her beau because they will both be holding copies of best-selling self-help book Six Billion People And You.

Simon Pegg rom-com Man Up When the train pulls into the station, Nancy discovers Jessica has left her copy behind and races after her, only to cross paths with the blind date, Jack (Pegg).

On the spur of the moment, Nancy decides to pose as Jessica and see where things lead.

Surprisingly, she gets on well with Jack but there are skeletons in both of their closets they would prefer to keep hidden.

Man Up is an unappealing title for a feel-good romp that relies heavily on the leads to carry the film through its occasional lulls.

Screenwriter Morris doesn't overcomplicate her narrative, juxtaposing Nancy and Jack's first date with preparations for the 40th anniversary party of her parents (Ken Stott, Harriet Walter).

Dialogue is peppered with polished one-liners and Palmer sustains momentum until a suitably grand finale.


It's a blind date... Simon Pegg |and Lake Bell in rom-com Man Up

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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Huddersfield Daily Examiner (Huddersfield, England)
Date:May 29, 2015
Previous Article:also showing.
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