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Review: Girlfriend

Concerned only with the truth
By PETER KEOUGH  |  September 27, 2011
3.0 3.0 Stars

When big stars portray characters with mental disabilities, it often seems like winning an Oscar is in the back of their minds. Evan Sneider, on the other hand, who plays a young man with Down syndrome in Justin Lerner's affecting drama, and who himself has the condition, seems like he's concerned only with the truth. As Evan, he combines simplicity and canniness, cutting through deceit to the realities denied by the folks in his sad blue-collar town. One night Evan's mother (Amanda Plummer) asks him to make a wish. He says he wants a girlfriend, and his wish comes true, but at a cost. Part of the price is the money Evan suddenly comes into, which he gives to Candy (Shannon Woodward), a single mother with an abusive boyfriend. Another might be Evan's innocence, tested by those who would exploit him. Shooting in his hometown of Wayland, Massachusetts, Lerner has a keen sense of class and setting. And despite some narrative miscues, Sneider's performance keeps him honest.

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  Topics: Reviews , Massachusetts, Boston, innocence,  More more >
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