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Friday, March 6, 2015

Friday Night is Movie Night: Not Another Happy Ending

I was browsing through Netflix for new releases and found a movie that sounded interesting. It starred Karen Gillan of Doctor Who fame and it was about books, so I figured what the heck and queued it up.

Product Description (From Amazon):
When a struggling publisher discovers his only successful author is blocked, he knows he has to unblock her or he's finished. She is become too happy with her new found success and she cannot write when she is happy. The only trouble is, the worse he makes her feel, the more he realizes he is in love with her.

My Thoughts:
Karen Gillan plays Jane, the author. The movie opens with her receiving another rejection letter from a publisher for her novel, The Anguish of My Father. She has a Wall of Rejection where she posts all the rejection letters she receives. We next see her donning pants, vest, bowler hat (all in muted earth tones) and a red umbrella; very Annie Hall meets Charlie Chaplin. She starts walking we know not where to until she ends up at a Publishers office, which may or may not have also been his apartment, answered at the door by a guy in his underpants who is the assistant and perhaps roommate. This part of the story was a bit ambiguous. She overhears a conversation by the publisher, Tom, which is in French with a lot of yelling and what I can only assume is cursing.

When he is off his call, he takes her into his office, tells her he sees potential in her book, but that is requires a lot of rewriting and a title change. Then he turns around and tells her he'll give her a two book contract deal. The stage is set.

With his assistance, the rewrites are complete and she shows up at the office (maybe apartment) to see the finished copy of her book. However, when she pulls out a book from one of the boxes, she sees the title is Happy Ending and not The Anguish of My Father. She is livid, starts screaming at him, says some fairly harsh things, promises to get on the second book only so she can deliver on her contract and she will never have to see him again.

She goes on the receive accolades, awards and the affection of the reading populace of Scotland. She also captures the attention of another author, Willy, and they begin a romantic relationship. He is a very successful writer, but also self-absorbed. Their relationship definitely seems a bit one sided, not emotionally, but more that she does all the work and he reaps all the benefits and he seems to be oblivious to anything but himself.

Jane is trying to finish her book for Tom so she can sign to a new publisher, a bigger more successful publisher. She is down to her last chapter and the unthinkable happens, she gets writer's block. She tries to write, but all she can hear is the tap tap tapping of the keys on Willy's traditional typewriter. She starts baking, which she does when she is blocked and then she goes for walks, doing anything she can to avoid the fact that she is unable to write.

This concerns Tom. For one, her book is past due. For another, his publishing company is failing and he needs her finished book, since it will be another bestseller, to save his company. So he devises a plan. Most people are creative when they are miserable. The reason her first book was so powerful was that it is semi-autobiographical (Okay, it is totally based on her life although she won't admit it.)and she had a really rough childhood dealing with abandonment issues from her father. He figures she is not able to write because she is happy, so he decides to sabotage her life so she will become miserable again and she can finish her book.

Does his plan succeed? Tut tut. Spoilers!

It was a diverting enough movie, having some very humorous moments. I don't see it receiving any awards, but it was enjoyable enough. It's quirky, but I will be honest, has received some mixed reviews on Amazon. However, as I don't personally see a lot of movies involving authors and book writing as a theme, I did like it overall. I would definitely suggest queuing it up on Netflix, though, and not paying the money for it.


  1. Haven't heard of this one, but it sounds quirky and you know how I love quirky! Thanks for the heads up!

    1. I did enjoy it, but I am glad it was on NetFlix. I love quirky. I love book themes. I think my issue was really just a lot of poor editing.

    2. Oh yeah, and the blonde in the banner? She isn't in the film until near the end and is not a main character. So why is she even on the banner?

    3. Maybe the blonde was dating the director or producer? Yeah, I can be cynical...