Daniel Radcliffe effortlessly proves that the indie rom-com could be his thing.
Daniel Radcliffe is eliciting another couple of thousand words this week, on whether he can safely navigate a "post-Harry Potter" movie career. The reason for this is What If - a new indie romantic-comedy starring the Wizard Boy himself as medical school dropout Wallace who's been repeatedly burned by bad relationships.
It's got all the hallmarks of a sort of...new...(500) Days of Summer. It's got the cool guy from Girls (Adam Driver), who plays Wallace's roommate Allan. It's got the cool girl from Ruby Sparks (Zoe Kazan), who plays an animator living with her steady long-term boyfriend. The thing is: Wallace forms an instant connection with Kazan's character - but can they ever be just friends? Yep, so it all sounds horrendously formulaic - but isn't that what we want from our indie romantic comedies? We want Brooklyn apartments that the characters couldn't ever afford in real life. We want coffee shops and skinny lattes and little dogs and Adam Driver and maybe, just maybe, we want Daniel Radcliffe.
Daniel Radcliffe and Kazan in 'What If'
"There's nothing unfamiliar or unconventional about the thoroughly charming indie rom-com "What If" - but that is precisely this movie's secret," said Andrew O'Hehir of Salon.com.
"If you can suspend your incredulity for a moment, "What If" has its bright moments. And that's thanks in large part to its leads, who manage to do what Radcliffe has always done well: conjure up a little magic," said Stephanie Merry of the Washington Post.
"What if is less conventional and more winning than most films in this category," wrote Claudia Puig of USA Today.
"What If draws on all the best tropes of the romantic comedy genre and transcends the sum of its parts with a sharp script, pleasing direction and charming stars," said Max Nicholson of IGN Movies.
"The film manages a neat trick of sticking close to formula while still being unexpectedly fresh," said Ian Buckwalter of NPR.com.
What If is out in cinemas now.