'The F Word' - Review

Daniel Radcliffe plays Wallace, a medical school drop-out with a lousy job who lives with his sister (Jemima Rooper) in Toronto. His last relationship ended badly a bit more than a year ago. On one of his first social outings since then, he meets Chantry (Zoe Kazan) who seems wonderful ... but has a boyfriend. They become close friends while struggling with their attraction to each other.

The movie is based on the play Toothpaste and Cigars, and was released in "some countries" (per Wikipedia - I think they mean mostly the U.S.A.) as "What If." Director Michael Dowse's record is interesting: with two "FUBAR" movies, "It's All Gone Pete Tong" and "Goon" behind him, he's never done anything remotely resembling a romantic comedy before (and maybe that's a good thing).

It's a real pleasure to see Toronto being Toronto: it's my home town, it appears in hundreds of movies, but always as "New York," or "Chicago," or Anonymous, U.S.A. So for once it gets to play itself.

I've said this before, but of the "Harry Potter" crew, Radcliffe is definitely the most interesting: he's been getting out there and doing different projects (some of them distinctly weird, like "Horns"), trying and stretching his acting skills. He's not (yet) a brilliant actor, but he's not bad at all and he's charming here. And Zoe Kazan - I hadn't seen her before. Also charming, as required. Again, possibly not a great actress (yet), but what a legacy she has: her grandfather was Elia Kazan, one of Hollywood's most famous directors, both her parents are well-established screenwriters, and she herself is also a screenwriter and playwright. A very entertaining story-in-a-story.

The final product is perhaps a little more scatological than I would have liked - mostly, but not exclusively, in the form of Wallace's friend Allan (Adam Driver), but clever and funny writing combined with such appealing leads produces one of the best rom coms I've seen in a long time.