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One Day isn't quite enough 

Ambitious concept doesn't work in practise for romantic drama

What begins as an almost sexy encounter between Emma (Anne Hathaway) and Dexter (Jim Sturgess) on grad night at Edinburgh University in 1988 turns into a saga of their friendship. We’re privy to the following 20 years of their respective lives, every July 15, as each finds or loses ambition---Sturgess, a coked-up TV host who falls from fame, and Hathaway, a waitress turned teacher and novelist. The secondary characters, including Sturgess’ mother (Patricia Clarkson), remain barely peripheral. Director Lone Scherfig’s (An Education) attempt to interpret David Nicholls’ novel for the screen---refreshingly anti-Hollywood plot twists and all---keeps Hathaway, Sturgess and a potentially engrossing story at a telescopic distance. It’s a shame lack of character development gets in the way of a worthwhile cast and story; two decades is too much ground to cover in less than a couple hours.


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