Parents' Guide to

The Go-Getter

By James Rocchi, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 17+

Mature road-trip dramedy doesn't go anywhere new.

Movie R 2008 93 minutes
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Road trips, minor crimes, major tragedies, big actors in small parts, sex and drugs and love set to an ace soundtrack -- THE GO-GETTER incorporates a lot of indie-film cliches. And while it's well-made enough, it doesn't really distinguish itself from the crowd, either. Pucci's Mercer seems curiously passive -- he's a reactive character, even as he actively seeks out his half-brother -- and Deschanel's Kate is another indie-film cliche, a plucky life-affirming sprite who puts up with the male lead's bad behavior solely because doing otherwise would end the film.

Directed and written by Martin Hynes,The Go-Getter is certainly well-made, with some nicely inventive and expressive shots and a few good lines. (Mercer, who's living with one of his teachers after his mother's death, explains to Kate how that's going: "I make them nervous. If you don't watch enough TV, you make people nervous.") At the same time, those moments don't add up to much of a whole. The Go-Getter feels, regrettably, more generic than inspired -- as if it was made out of parts from other, better, independent films that debuted at the Sundance Film Festival. Even the substantial charms of Pucci and Deschanel can't make The Go-Getter feel unique or significantly different from the other independent films it resembles.

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