Okay, no one needs to see a love scene with John Travolta and Scarlett Johansson, do they? Actually, the two actors don't have a love scene, but I figured that would catch your attention. Rising starlet Johansson and fading A-list actor Travolta star in this character drama about a bunch of white trash people in New Orleans who all live together. There's not much plot, but it's entertaining nonetheless thanks to several good performances.
"A Love Song for Bobby Long" starts out with a trailer trash girl named Pursy who discovers that her mother has died - and she's already missed the funeral. She heads on over to New Orleans where she finds that she has inherited one third of a house; the other two-thirds will be shared by her mother's friends Bobby Long (Travolta), a drunken ex-professor, and his aspiring writer student Lawson (Gabriel Macht). While they start out at odds with one another, they soon find a common denominator, though eventually a secret could tear them apart. In the meanwhile, Pursy starts studying, Lawson finds new inspiration for his long-delayed book and Bobby Long discovers that there is something more interesting than the bottom of an empty liquor bottle.
There isn't anything especially remarkable about "Bobby Long," but then again, compared to the crap that's out there these days, you could do a lot worse. The plot is nothing new, but the performances alone make this one worthwhile. Johansson, who has been churning out quality product after quality product for the last couple of years, is the shining light here. Travolta turns in the most memorable performance, even if it is a bit over-the-top at times. His character would have been much better served in a comedy than a drama, but I liked him nonetheless. Macht is also good, but nothing spectacular.
I wouldn't really go out of my way to watch this movie as it is a bit too scripted and formulaic, but if you get the chance, you could, as I already said, do worse.
"A Love Song for Bobby Long" is a fun little drama that has a few laughs and good performances. It won't win any awards, but that's okay.
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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