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Little Manhattan


Stars: Josh Hutcherson, Charlie Ray, Bradley Whitford, Cynthia Nixon

Director: Mark Levin

We haven't had a cute sub-teen love story since A Little Romance decades ago, so this endearing little tale is more than welcome.

Gabe (Hutcherson), almost 11, becomes infatuated with Rosemary (Ray), even though she's four inches taller and four months older. A bond of friendship develops during their time at karate class and they embark on a series of escapades together, including besting the local bully and finding a flat for Gabe's Dad (Whitford), who's getting divorced from his wife (Nixon).

Soon poor Gabe is experiencing 'the pain that had no name' and is longing to kiss his new friend.

The kids' break-up (before make-up) is rather abruptly contrived and not too believable. But the film's heart is good, and so are its mini-stars - even if Hiutcherson is slightly ill-at-ease with some too-adult narration and an embarrassing crying scene.

David Quinlan

USA 2005. UK Distributor: 20th Century Fox. Technicolor.
90 minutes. Widescreen. UK certificate: PG.

Guidance ratings (out of 3): Sex/nudity 0, Violence/Horror 0, Drugs 0, Swearing 0.

Review date: 09 Jul 2006