Gregory's Two Girls (1999)
Critic Consensus: No consensus yet.
as Gregory Underwood
as Fraser Rowan
as Maddy Underwood
as Detective Gorrie
as Detective Ritchie
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The good thing about this film is that it stands alone - you don't have to have seen the original. Unfortunately this is also it's biggest drawback. It would have been nice to have included a few of the original characters in the new story and seen how their lives had developed. Sinclair as in the original is excellent and provides the films best comic moments as he attempts to deal with awkward and embarrassing situations but the supporting cast is not as strong as in the original movie. Forsyth is to be congratulated on a brave attempt to move the character on and create an original sequel but the film is ultimately flawed and lacks the warmth of the original
"Gregory's Girl" (1981) was a beloved independent hit, but this disappointing sequel was barely noticed. Years have passed, and gawky Gregory (John Gordon Sinclair) is now schoolteacher Greg. His head is filled with grand ideas of righteous politics, to such degrees that his class is casually told to remind him when his lectures fly too far off-topic. But he's also troubled by taboo feelings for his pretty student Frances (Carly McKinnon, who has just one other acting credit). Further complications arise with the blunt sexual overtures of eligible Bel (Maria Doyle Kennedy, warmly appealing) and a reunion with an old chum (Dougray Scott) who's now a communications mogul. When the latter's shady operations inflame Frances' young idealism, Greg must choose between his conflicting loyalties.
Scottish writer/director Bill Forsyth once seemed like a major talent but his career went permanently astray after the flop of 1994's "Being Human," his Robin Williams-led bid for commercial pay dirt. It's a shame, because his earlier films are quite wonderful. This weak attempt at revisiting a past success is weighed down with a dodgy student/teacher bond that is treated as something sweet rather than distasteful and a high-tech subplot that is grossly inappropriate for the setting's gentle, small-town ambience. The thick accents are a sizable problem for international audiences and, really, Mr. Forsyth..."beaver" jokes?
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