THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK

"Truth Brings Wisdom"

Quality: Content: -2 "EXTREME CAUTION"
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Language
Violence
Sex
Nudity

Summary:

THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK is a drama about a love-struck recent college grad and an older man, who tries to give the boy advice on his love life, but things get complicated. THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK is an engaging, absorbing movie, with an uplifting ending containing family reconciliation, but it involves illicit love affairs and strong foul language.

Review:

THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK is a drama about a love-struck young man and an older man, who tries to give the boy advice on his love life, but things get complicated and messy. THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK is an engaging, absorbing movie, with an uplifting ending containing family reconciliation, but it involves illicit love affairs and strong foul language.

The movie opens with young Thomas Webb, the son of a publisher and his artistic wife, just out of college and pining for Mimi, a college friend who just wants a platonic friendship. Thomas moves to the Lower East Side of New York City, far away from the ritzy Upper West Side environs of his parents. The first day he moves into his new apartment, he meets W.F. Gerald, a shambling alcoholic writer played by Jeff Bridges, who dispenses worldly wisdom regarding Thomas’ love life and goals.

One night while dining with Mimi, Thomas sees his father (Pierce Brosnan) with a much younger woman (Kate Beckinsale). They are clearly having an intense affair. Thomas finds out the woman also works in publishing. Protective of his fragile mother (Cynthia Nixon), Thomas starts following the woman. However, she catches him doing it, and they begin an awkward conversation.

Thomas ends up sleeping with the woman. This leads to a series of events that will upset everything Thomas thinks he knows about his parents and the older writer he’s befriended.

The direction, dialogue and performances in THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK are compelling and tightly knit together, running a sleek 88 minutes. Relative newcomers Callum Turner and Kiersey Clemons, who play Thomas and Mimi, hold their own against a talented cast of veterans, led by Jeff Bridges.

The movie’s two big plot twists eventually lead to an uplifting ending. The main characters are forced to become a bit wiser as a result. This leads to some touching moments, including scenes of family reconciliation. However, the story involves illicit love affairs and other bad decisions, plus some strong foul language and crude dialogue. So, MOVIEGUIDE® advises extreme caution for THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK.

Content:

(PaPa, RoRo, FR, B, Acap, Ho, LL, V, S, NN, A, DD, MM) Strong mixed worldview with strong Romantic, antinomian elements combined with some moral elements leading to honesty and family reconciliation, plus a minor anti-capitalist theme suggesting that some modern redevelopment in some New York City neighborhoods has caused the city to “lose its soul,” and a brief homosexual reference; 21 obscenities (mostly “f” words), two strong profanities and two light profanities; father violently grabs his son after he learns an awful secret, but he stops after realizing what he’s about to do; scene of implied fornication, crude sexual references, married man kisses his mistress in a restaurant and plans on leaving his wife of many years, passionate kissing in another scene, and confession of a past one night stand; brief image of upper female nudity and three images of upper male nudity in three scenes; alcohol use; smoking and brief marijuana use; and, college graduate stalks his father’s mistress and confronts her, cheating, lying, people hide truth but later make confessions, divorce.

In Brief:

THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK opens with young Thomas Webb, the son of a publisher and his artistic wife, just out of college and pining for Mimi, a close college friend. Thomas moves to the Lower East Side of New York City, far away from the Upper West Side environs of his parents. The first day he meets an unkempt alcoholic writer, who dispenses worldly wisdom regarding Thomas’ love life. One night while dining with Mimi, Thomas sees his father with a younger woman. Protective of his fragile mother, Thomas starts following the woman. However, Thomas ends up sleeping with her. This leads to events that upset everyone’s world.
The direction, dialogue and performances in THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK are compelling. Two relative newcomers in the roles of Thomas and Mimi hold their own against a talented cast of veterans, led by Jeff Bridges. THE ONLY LIVING BOY IN NEW YORK is an absorbing movie, with an uplifting ending containing family reconciliation, but it involves illicit love affairs and strong foul language; so, extreme caution is advised.