Me Without You

This little 2001 sleeper may not even be available to rent. I'm not sure where my source got it, but I can't find it in the catalogs. It stars a brilliant Michelle Williams ("Brokeback Mountain" and "Dawson's Creek"), Anna Friel ("A Midsummer Night's Dream") and - be still my heart! - Oliver Milburn ("The Forsyte Saga" and "Tess of the d'Urbervilles"). In addition, you will see Kyle MacLachlan ("Blue Velvet" and "Dune") in the thankless role of the visiting American professor.

The stage is set showing two little girls who live next door to each other. They play together, get in trouble together and have what seems to be an almost sibling rivalry. William's character, "Holly" is routinely the underdog, while Friel's "Marina" is a self-centered manipulator. In addition, Holly nurses an unrequited crush on Marina's older brother Nat.

The second section of the movie becomes a little hard to tolerate, with Marina's night clubbing, drugging and general out-of-control behavior, in which Holly loyally tags along, if only to pick up the pieces. You can see that Marina instinctively foils Holly's crush on Nat, who moves to France after expressing an interest in Holly after all, because he was misled by a conniving Marina. Holly (thinking he has forgotten her) trudges her way through one dismal fling after another, including a clash with Marina over their English Lit professor (MacLachlan). Whew! Pretty soapy, huh?

Remember I said this was a chick flick, so there is no need to discuss the plot any further, but I WOULD like to mention a few other facets to this film. Oliver Milburn played a young Forsyte in the second version of "The Forsyte Saga," the supremely popular Masterpiece Theatre production. He was appealing and ingenuous, but now he has grown up! YUM!

Michelle Williams displays such a convincing British accent I had to look up her bio and remind myself she is from Montana! She inhabits her roles so fully, you never catch her acting... Keep an eye on her... I suspect the best is yet to come!

Good luck finding this...