The Half of It (2020) 1080p

Movie Poster
The Half of It (2020) 1080p - Movie Poster
Comedy | Romance
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Run Time:
104 min
IMDB Rating:
7.5 / 10 
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Directors: Alice Wu [Director] ,

Movie Description:
A shy, introverted, Chinese-American, straight-A student finds herself helping the school jock woo the girl they both secretly love. In the process, each teaches the other about the nature of love as they find connection in the most unlikely of places.


  • The Half of It (2020) 1080p - Movie Scene 1
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  • The Half of It (2020) 1080p - Movie Scene 1

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Great script, great acting

This is a true gem. I admit though not a movie for everyone. The sensation lies in the subtleties here. If you like a lot of action and drama this is not for you. Its a wonderful story about human connections and the many ways love can manifest itself. The writing is simply sublime and something thats generally absent in most Netflix productions.The movie has an incredible feel for timing and words and a good sense of humor. Nothing seems rushed, nothing is loud. So its generally a quite, slow paced movie. A welcome surprise in the often dissapointing Netflix offering.

Sweet and unique film, but cringy dialogue

As soon as I watched the trailer, I loved the idea of this film. The awkward journeys of self-discovery the characters embark on were really well executed by the actors. I also appreciate that the protagonist was a queer woman of color, which we don't get to see too often.

However, the dialogue alone bumped my rating down by at least three stars. A lot of it came across as an attempt to sound 'deep', which instead came off as pretentious and inauthentic. Other lines simply didn't sound like anything any teenager (or any person in general) would say. Think John Green but even worse.

Overall, a sweet film without the usual romantic element, but I just couldn't watch it without cringing at most of its lines.

An enjoyable and interesting film, with an intelligent script, but it runs too long

There are lots of things to like in this riff on Cyrano de Bergerac.

Often, it is the new material, the things that differentiate it from Cyrano's plot line, that I found the most interesting. Such as Paul's doubts about his ability to love someone in an intelligent way. Christian, in Rostand's masterpiece, recognizes that he can't speak intelligently to women, but he never doubts his mind or the value of his love for Roxane. Paul in one moving scene doubts the validity of his romantic feelings for Aster because he thinks he's too dumb to really love well. That's a very sad moment, and something no man or woman should ever feel.

The same-sex themes that run through this movie are, in principle, not in Rostand's original, but they're certainly not foreign to it either. When Cyrano first proposes to Christian that they work together to win Roxane's love, it's hard not to suspect that Cyrano also has some sort of interest in Christian as well, though he may be unaware of it.

The performances of the three main roles here are good. I found Daniel Diemer particularly good as the Christian whose mind has not been developed, but who does indeed develop some in the course of the movie. His role could have been a two-dimensional caricature like the fireman Christian in the movie *Roxane*, but Diemer - and Alice Wu's script - make it more nuanced than that. Leah Lewis is also very good as the female Cyrano who, unlike the male original, comes to a realization of her feelings for the Roxane only once she starts to help Paul/Christian express his.

There are definitely weak parts to this movie. Trig's character is over-the-top stereotype/caricature,as are most of the rest of the townfolk. His more or less equivalent in the play, de Guiche, is more interesting for being more complex. Similarly, the way Ellie wins over her sadly xenophobic classmates with an unexceptional performance of an unexceptional song is too fast and complete to be convincing. The turnarounds at the end of the movie, especially Paul's with regard to his own homophobia, also happen too fast and too neatly. They could have been motivated earlier in the movie had they been thought out more. While the script, pace some of the previous reviewers, is generally very intelligent, it is lacking in that respect. It takes too long to work things out, and then the resolution of the conflicts happens too quickly.

It might also have helped if we had seen why Aster allowed herself to be claimed by Trig. That didn't seem convincing to me either.

Still, for only the second movie by the writer-director, Alice Wu, she got a lot right, and sometimes very impressively so.

This is definitely a movie to be watched at home, in my opinion. I can't see most audiences sitting through it in a theater. But watched at home, with perhaps one break to get a snack, it is an interesting and original riff on Rostand's great masterpiece.
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