THE VERY THOUGHT OF YOU
Release Date: August 27, 1999
Starring: Joseph Fiennes, Monica Potter,
Rufus Sewell, Tom Hollander, &
Runtime: 88 minutes
Distributor: Miramax Films
Director: Nick Hamm
Producer: Grainne Marmion
Writer: Peter Morgan
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The story unravels as a distraught and confused Laurence, played by Joseph Fiennes (the nerdy William Shakespeare in SHAKESPEARE IN LOVE), pours his heart out to Dr. Pedersen, a psychotherapist. His saga begins in a Minneapolis airport where a pretty young traveler, Martha, played by Monica Porter, is flying to London on a whim. As she reaches for a baggage cart, she bumps into Laurence's rich friend, Daniel, a music industry executive. Daniel is immediately infatuated with Martha. He pays the ticket agent $5,000 to upgrade her ticket to first class so that he can sit next to her. Martha finds the whole incident amusing but is not interested in Daniel romantically. She tells Daniel that she is coming from a broken relationship, unemployment and only $35 in her pocket and wants to start a new life. Daniel offers her a free room in an exclusive hotel in hopes that he can see her again.
At the airport in London, Laurence also bumps into Martha. Unlike her encounter with Daniel, however, both Martha and Laurence are instantly attracted to one another simultaneously. To complicate this story further, a friend of both Laurence and Daniel's, Frank, also runs into Martha, at the park. Frank is jealous of the success of Daniel, with whom he has an intense rivalry, so he finds a way to foil Daniel's attempts to woo Martha. What follows from there is a comic merry-go-round of events.
THE VERY THOUGHT OF YOU is a very well-cast movie. Monica Potter (last seen as Robin Williams' love interest in PATCH ADAMS) may remind people of the appealing Meg Ryan in her mannerisms. Joseph Fiennes also sparkles, as does the rest of the cast, especially Rufus Sewell as Frank. The music selection adds to the old-fashioned feel of the movie (despite some foul language and other minor problems), including songs like Dusty Springfield's "I Only Want To Be with You."
THE VERY THOUGHT OF YOU has a mild non-Christian worldview about human nature and romantic love. It flirts mildly with the concepts of "Destiny" and "Fate" regarding its romantic relationships and entanglements, in a godless sort of way. Thus, it never suggests that God is the source of such effects. Even so, the movie addresses the issue of friendship from a mildly moral perspective and asks how much a person should sacrifice for friendship. The filmmakers handle these themes in a sophisticated manner that allows the audience to explore them for themselves. This quality helps make the movie more engaging.
The movie's sophistication, its non-recognition of God, some foul language, and some excessive alcohol use, especially by Frank who has a tendency to get depressed, rates a caution for older children, however. Even so, the movie includes no sex scenes or direct talking about sexuality, a fact which older moral viewers may happily cheer.