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Sixty-Six


By Bret McCabe | Posted 3/26/2008

Helena Bonham Carter has a smashing career ahead of her as 1960s matriarchs if director Paul Weiland's entertaining, if obvious, 2006 comedy Sixty Six is any indication. She plays Esther Rubens, the mother of asthmatic, nerdy Bernie (Gregg Sulkin), who knows how to rock a loud floral-print ensemble, and wife of Manny (Eddie Marsan), who owns a grocery business that's struggling now that a large supermarket has come to town. Bernie spends most of his days sulking around his North London neighborhood hoping that England gets knocked out of the World Cup-if the team survives, it will face West Germany in the finals on the same day as his bar mitzvah, the lone day he presumes everybody would pay attention to him. Soccer fans will know that 1966 was not only the last time England hosted the World Cup but also the last time the English team won the title, so Bernie's party's fate is a foregone conclusion. Weiland, though, is more interested in mining Bernie's family for broad, pedestrian laughs. It's all a bit lowest common denominator-Sulkin's knowing voice-over, the witty soundtrack's song choices-but Carter's brazen mother makes it a cheeky treat.

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