The Next Best Thing (2000)



Critic Consensus: Story elements clash and acting falls short.

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Movie Info

Madonna and Rupert Everett star in this comic drama about a mismatched couple whose unconventional choices lead to an unusual dilemma. Abbie (Madonna) and Robert (Rupert Everett) are best friends, but since Robert is gay, their friendship never progresses into a romance. However, both Abbie and Robert desperately want to be parents, and they agree to have a child that they will raise together. This raises a few eyebrows, especially from Robert's mother (Lynn Redgrave) and Vera (Illeana Douglas), a close friend of Robert's who is secretly in love with him and wants the sort of relationship with him that he has with Abbie. Robert and Abbie go through with their plan, but when Robert meets and falls in love with another man, he decides he wants custody of the child, setting in motion a bitter dispute. Everett co-wrote the screenplay for The Next Big Thing; it was Everett's first produced screenplay, though he previously published a novel.
PG-13 (for mature thematic elements, sexual content, partial nudity and language)
Art House & International , Comedy , Drama
Directed By:
Written By:
In Theaters:

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as Abbie Reynolds
Rupert Everett
as Robert Whittaker
Illeana Douglas
as Elizabeth Ryder
Lynn Redgrave
as Helen Whittaker
Josef Sommer
as Richard Whittaker
Suzanne Krull
as Annabel
Mark Valley
as Cardiologist
John Carroll Lynch
as Abbie's Lawyer
Ricki Lopez
as Angel
Ramiro Fabian
as Flavio
Tiffany Paulsen
as Young Mother
Joan Axelrod
as Bel Air Matron
George Axelrod
as Bel Air Man
Jack Betts
as Vernon
Kelly 'K-Mac' Garmon
as Rapper No. 2
'Browski' James Reese
as Rapper No. 3
'Dutch' Amoa Chester
as Rapper No. 4
Father Terrance Sweeney
as Priest at Funeral
Anna Garduno
as Coffee Shop Waitress
Frank James
as Dad at Airport
Tom Burke
as Tom, Annabel's Husband
Benjamin Koldyke
as Kelly's Boyfriend
Marie Chambers
as Party Guest No. 1
Lucas Lee Krost
as Party Guest No. 2
Glenn Tannous
as Party Guest No. 3
Caitlin Wachs
as Rachel
Jessica Sara
as Kid No. 3
Katelin Petersen
as Kid No. 4
Holly Houston
as Yoga Student
Alvin H. Einbender
as Male Diner
Laurent Schwaar
as Restaurant Manager
Patrick Price
as Maitre D'
Michael Arnon
as Waiter
Jay Karnes
as Kevin's Lawyer
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News & Interviews for The Next Best Thing

Critic Reviews for The Next Best Thing

All Critics (92) | Top Critics (28)

Two movies in one, and there's not enough breathing room for both of them.

December 31, 1999
Washington Post
Top Critic

[Madonna] can barely muster even the rudiments of human expression.

Full Review… | December 31, 1999
Entertainment Weekly
Top Critic

I wouldn't call what [Madonna] does acting; it's more like vogue posing.

December 31, 1999
San Jose Mercury News
Top Critic

Never having decided whether it wants to be comedy or a sentimental hand-wringer, it tries to be both and winds up being neither.

December 31, 1999
Boston Globe
Top Critic

Terminally slow-moving.

December 31, 1999
Dallas Morning News
Top Critic

It means to speak to raw, complex emotions, but it looks so ridiculously glossy you can never suspend disbelief.

December 31, 1999
Detroit News
Top Critic

Audience Reviews for The Next Best Thing

Rupert and Madonna re friends who have a drunken night.

Candy Rose
Candy Rose

Super Reviewer

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.

xGary Xx
xGary Xx

Super Reviewer


I paid $1.50 to see this and I felt ripped off.

Michael Gildea
Michael Gildea

Super Reviewer

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