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No, Josh Hartnett doesn't make the most convincing corporate up-and-comer in the world, but then Matthew, his character in this pensive romantic drama, is supposed to be uncomfortable in his business costume. He's a photographer at heart, a sensitive guy who abandoned that passion when Lisa (Diane Kruger), his enigmatic other true love, abandoned him. Their romance had an oddly abrupt end after Lisa left without a word, so when Matthew thinks he sees her upon returning to Chicago, he starts lying to his fiancée and practically stalking his old flame before becoming entangled in a strange tryst with a lovesick nurse (Rose Byrne). The MGM publicity department busied itself trying to promote this remake ofL'Appartement(1996) as some kind of heavy-breathingFatal Attraction, and director Paul McGuigan certainly fills it with enough slick split-screens and MTV-soundtrack moments to hype it, yet it isn't even remotely a thriller. There are flashbacks upon flashbacks--Vanilla Skybegins to feel linear in comparison--and the screenplay insists on spelling everything out so we'll be sure to get how thoughtful it really is, but it all isn't half bad. Though Hartnett is a little out of his depth, his gentle, beleaguered masculinity works well, and the women are both compelling: Kruger redeems herself after being more wooden than the Trojan Horse inTroy, and Byrne is quite good. Even Matthew Lillard does solid work as Matthew's vulnerable, big-talking buddy. Somewhere in all of it is a surprisingly adult look at the things people do when love seems either too perilously close or too far away to believe in.--Steve Wiecking
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CastRose Byrne, Matthew Lillard, Diane Kruger, Josh Hartnett, Christopher Cousins
DirectorPaul McGuigan
Screen WriterBrandon Boyce, Gilles Mimouni
DVD Release Date:  December 28, 2004
Runtime:  114 minutes
Studio:  MGM (Video & DVD)
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More Wicker Park (2004) reviews
review by . June 26, 2009
posted in Movie Hype
If better actors than Josh Hartnett or Diane Krueger had been cast, WICKER PARK could have been a sleek thriller with lead characters we cared out. Instead, it's a glossy but fairly lifeless mystery that generates only academic interest.    Hartnett plays a young professional who seems to have it made. He's about to be engaged to a lovely young professional. He's helped land a major client, is about to globetrot to China in preparation for taking another leap upward in his career. …
review by . September 05, 2006
When "arty" direction becomes a distraction, it becomes over-done and that's exactly what happens in this film. It also has enough plot holes to drive a Mac truck through. I'd been meaning to watch this for a while, but the sexual explicit looking cover and the blurb, made me think it would be weak-plotted but that certainly wasn't the case. The storyline is composed of flashbacks and that didn't affect my enjoyment of this film, despite its momentary confusion!     The beginning …
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Wicker Park (2004)
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