The Next Best Thing (2000)
Critic Consensus: Story elements clash and acting falls short.
Best buddies Abbie (Madonna), a heterosexual yoga instructor, and Robert (Rupert Everett), a gay landscaper, cope with failed relationships, the approach of middle age, and the AIDS-related death of a mutual friend by sticking together as a "family of choice." Drunk one night, they have sex, and when Abbie turns up pregnant, they decide to move in together and raise the child as decidedly unconventional co-parents. Flash forward several years and Abbie begins dating Ben (Benjamin Bratt), an investment banker. The new relationship causes tension between Abbie and Robert that ultimately leads to betrayal, courtroom confrontation, and a sudden denouement. Everett, a sometime writer of trashy comic novels such as Hello Darling, Are You Working?, reportedly supplied the film's concept and even additional dialogue, although Tom Ropelewski is the credited screenwriter. This was pop diva Madonna's first film role since the hoopla of Evita; she supplied a highly edited hit cover of Don McLean's "American Pie" and one other song for the soundtrack, which was released on her own Maverick imprint. … More
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as Abbie Reynolds
as Robert Whittaker
as Elizabeth Ryder
as Helen Whittaker
as Richard Whittaker
as Abbie's Lawyer
as Young Mother
as Bel Air Matron
as Bel Air Man
as Rapper No. 1
as Rapper No. 2
as Rapper No. 3
as Rapper No. 4
as Priest at Funeral
as Coffee Shop Waitress
as Dad at Airport
as Tom, Annabel's Husb...
as Kelly's Boyfriend
as Party Guest No. 1
as Party Guest No. 2
as Party Guest No. 3
as Kid No. 3
as Kid No. 4
as Yoga Student
as Male Diner
as Restaurant Manager
as Maitre D'
as Kevin's Lawyer
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Critic Reviews for The Next Best Thing
Preposterous? Yes. Ridiculous? That, too.
When one of an alleged romantic movie's principal actors is basically just reading lines, it doesn't do much for chemistry.
After the melodrama kicks in, the film turns disastrously sappy.
John Schlesinger can't get a credible performance out of Madonna, he wastes Lynn Redgrave and Ileana Douglas, and he fails to locate the charm that Everett brought to Wedding.
Madonna has presence and grace, but her lines come out as if they've been practiced too many times in front of the mirror (in a quasi-British accent, no less).
Audience Reviews for The Next Best Thing
Rupert and Madonna re friends who have a drunken night.
Will someone PLEASE tell Madonna to stick to the day job?? She's just embarrassing herself...and someone should tell Rupert Everett that having an english accent isn't enough to carry a film outside of the US' female demographic.
I paid $1.50 to see this and I felt ripped off.
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