The Rewrite

Hugh Grant, Marisa Tomei, J.K. Simmons, Bella Heathcote
Directed by Marc Lawrence
Rating: B

Sleeping with a student is not a good way to start the first day of teaching.

Keith Michaels (Grant) is a one-time hit Hollywood screenwriter who takes a teaching position at a northeastern university because he can’t get any other work. He arrives at a Wendys in Binghamton, New York, jetlagged and overwhelmed when college students recognize him for his Oscar-winning movie. Karen (Heathcote) is a young college sophomore, eager to be accepted in his screenwriting class. She uses her charm to find her way into his bed… and class.

Michaels is a jaded screenwriter who can’t get past his fame for the one movie everyone loves, even though he had written two other movies. He doesn’t take his teaching seriously because he doesn’t know the first thing to cover. It takes a helpful student, a mom working two jobs with a passion for writing, to help bring Michaels back to life. He soon discovers that his students have a knack for writing and desires to help them succeed.

For a movie with low advertising, The Rewrite was pretty inspiring. Watching a group of students get through a writing class reminded me of the days I was taking creative writing in college. From the rough draft at the beginning of the semester to the polished final copy, it reminded me how good it felt to have something written down that came out of your own head.

Keith Michaels is a mess. He’s lost his inspiration, his family, and his job. It takes a fresh start and a new atmosphere to make him remember what he loved about writing in the first place. He doesn’t make the best decisions in the beginning of his teaching career when he sleeps with a student. As he matures throughout the film, he realizes that teaching has helped his students learn about themselves as well.

Albeit, The Rewrite isn’t bound to earn awards for its clever writing or dramatic plot, however, it’s a hopeful movie about growing up and re-discovering your passion. Whether those watching are writers or not, it might inspire you to think about something you used to love doing and that’s why I think it deserves a “B”.


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