Six years after his Harvard cred, Hynes seems to have returned to more fertile and vital ground with The Go-Getter, his second full-length film and a minor hit at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival. Hynes, who also wrote the film, never shows up on screen but the nerdy impresario he embodied years ago can be seen in the guise of Mercer White (Lou Taylor Pucci), a high-school dropout who takes to the road with a stolen car not long after his mother's death. Initially, Mercer's voyage has two goals: to find and inform his half-brother Arlen (Jsu Garcia) of their mother's death, and to get all sweaty-like with Joely (Jena Malone), a thong-sporting, middle-school crush of Mercer's.
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Stealing Harvard centers on the sensible, hardworking John (Jason Lee) who made a promise long ago that he would pay for his niece Noreen's (Tammy Blanchard) college education. At the time, John thought Noreen would never amount to much, considering she is the daughter of his trailer trash sister Patty (Megan Mullally, in the film's best, but neglected, role). Much to John's chagrin, Noreen gets accepted to Harvard and now he must make good on his word to pay for her first year of schooling. John already has the cash he needs, but he has promised this money to his fiancée Elaine (Leslie Mann) for use as a down payment on their dream home. Sounds like John is making too many promises.
Continue reading: Stealing Harvard Review
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