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Other Half, The (DVD Review)

19 Oct, 2008 By: Anne Sherber

Other Half

Street 10/28/08
$24.98 DVD
Not rated.
Stars Danny Dyer, Gillian Kearney, Vinnie Jones.

The Other Half is a quirky, fanciful look at the ways in which men and women are different. And the ways in which they are the same.

An English soccer fanatic and his American bride take a honeymoon trip to Portugal that is completely bankrolled by the bride’s father. When the couple arrives in Lisbon, they discover that the city is neck deep in soccer fever. A major international tournament is just getting underway and, by coincidence, the English national team is in the finals. The groom claims he had no idea. But slowly the bride begins to suspect that not only does she not have her new husband’s undivided attention, but he also may have planned the entire trip just so he could attend the tournament.

Dyer, a Colin Farrell lookalike, is very good as a man-boy who may or may not have married his new wife just to get to Portugal. And Kearney does a lot with a little as the loving new wife who is, apparently, too dimwitted to see that she is part of an elaborate plan devised by her new husband, who is desperate to see his beloved team play soccer.

The film is infused with idiosyncratic details that sometimes move the story forward and sometimes move it sideways. Dyer’s rich fantasy life is occasionally illustrated by, well, illustrations. And a pair of ersatz sportscasters rides around after the couple doing a play-by-play not on the soccer game but on the games being played by the newlyweds.

The quirks of The Other Half sometimes veer into the self-conscious, but ultimately it is a film that dares to be a little different and because of that is worth a look.

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