A vast improvement over the 2005 franchise introduction of co-writer/actress Emma Thompson's Mary-Poppinsish household savior, Nanny McPhee Returns finds modern-day meaning in its World War II-era English trappings. Grade: B.
Richard Curtis, like 'FM' 30 years ago, has used the premise as little more than an excuse for tried-and-true sitcom scenarios. Worse, while he's kept this a period piece, he has given all the characters a modern sensibility more fitting for 'Superbad' than the 1960s. Grade: C-.
We need more movies like 'Last Chance Harvey' to cover the middle ground on relationships. It not only respects actors (Dustin Hoffman and Emma Thompson), it respects their legacy, their back-story. And why can’t other actors of a certain age (Jack Nicholson, Morgan Freeman, Al Pacino, etc.) try similar films rather than the stale and dishonest action pieces and buddy comedies they grind out?
Audiences will likely find solace in the homey comforts of watching Hoffman and Thompson find a measure of love that feels true despite all that we've come to expect from the usual romantic-comedy presentations of love. There is none of the usual phony, overly plotted drama, just a lifetime of hurt and remorse infused with a dash of hope. Grade: B.