(USA, 99 min.)
Dir: Tom Hanks; Writ: Tom Hanks, Nia Vardalos
Starring: Tom Hanks, Julia Roberts, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Cedric the Entertainer, Taraji P. Henson, George Takei, Bryan Cranston, Pam Grier.
Need some knowledge? Get yourself to college! That’s the pat version of the lesson learned by title character Larry Crowne (Tom Hanks) in this persistently likeable comedy. When the heartless suits at U-Mart give hard-working Larry the sack because he lacks higher education, Larry heads off to community college to further his career before his outstanding debt with the bank dips even farther into the red. At school, Larry tries to improve his social skills by enrolling in a class called “The Art of Informal Conversation.” Armed with a positive outlook, a fuel-efficient scooter bike, and a new friend Talia (Gugu Mbatha-Raw), Larry has already bettered himself by the first day of school. Learning can be fun, it seems.