Directed by Lone Scherfig
Starring Anne Hathaway, Jim Sturgess, Patricia Clarkson
In the year of “Friends With Benefits” and “No Strings Attached,” it’s refreshing to see a movie about friends without benefits, otherwise known as a good old-fashioned romance. That said, “One Day” is not a particularly raw or stirring love story.
Based on the 2009 British novel by David Nicholls, who also wrote the screenplay, “One Day” follows a one-night fling turned friendship over the course of two decades. Emma (Anne Hathaway, using a British accent) is a struggling writer, Dexter (Jim Sturgess) a TV personality born into money. As we check in on their lives on July 15 of each year, we get a cross-section of a friendship that’s forever teetering on the edge of something more.
It’s a guilty pleasure to root for two beautiful people to kiss and have each other’s babies, but “One Day” is no epic love story. Emotions rarely emanate from
the screen, and we hardly know Emma or Dexter. We do know she’s a writer and the more moral of the two.
We know he’s a playboy who needs a woman to make him decent. She romanticizes Paris, and he reads “The Unbearable Lightness of Being.” Beyond such trifling details, though, you merely find yourself gazing at the two stars’ twinkling brown eyes.
Not that it’s a bad thing to be lured by twinkling brown eyes. “One Day” is enjoyable as a sweet romance, and parts of it do stick with you — as movies tend to do when you follow characters over 20 years. Just don’t expect it to move you.
David Nicholls wrote the screenplay for “One Day” as well as the novel on which it’s based.
Lone Scherfig previously directed “Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself” and “An Education,” starring