My Last Five Girlfriends (12a)

Click to follow

Julian Kemp's comedy is apparently based on a book by Alain de Botton, though its plot looks more like a knock-off of Nick Hornby's High Fidelity, with quirky interior musing in place of quirky independent music.

Brendan Patricks plays forlorn, thirtyish architect Duncan, recounting the story of his last five relationships and pondering why they failed. His retrospective unpacks a box of arch and slightly annoying narrative tricks that include cartoons, Barbie figures, surreal fancies, freeze-frames and joke cameos (notably Michael Sheen and Johnny Ball). What determines the sort of people we fall for? Is God running his own dating service?

These are among the questions wistfully posed as Duncan gets serious with Gemma (Naomie Harris), whose role as Girlfriend No 5 seems to depend on a wilful blindness: can't she see that he's a) needy, b) self-pitying, and c) a bit of a drip? Kemp works hard to shake up the boy-meets-girl conventions, but a duff script is a duff script, whichever way you slice it.