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The feature directorial debut of writer-director Jenee Marque, The Pretty One is a romantic comedy unlike any you've seen before. It centers on Laurel, a self-defeating introvert who is given a second shot at an exciting life when she accidentally assumes the identity of her recently deceased twin. With a plotline that dark, The Pretty One seems a hard sell. But this story of self-discovery is surprisingly endearing and delightful. Or, as I'm quoted in the above trailer, it's "daring, original, and thoroughly funny."
Zoe Kazan fronts The Pretty One as identical twins Laurel and Audrey. While Laurel is a wallflower who has never moved away from home, Audrey is a thrill-seeker living a flashy and fashionable life in the big city. But when the car accident tipped up top brings Audrey's life to an abrupt end, there's a mistaken identity issue that assumes Laurel was the one who died. Hurt by her friends and family's apparent lack of grief, Laurel takes on Audrey's identity and home. There, she meets the gawky next-door neighbor (Jake Johnson), who soon steals her heart. Of course, he thinks she's Audrey.
I had the opportunity to see this unconventional rom-com at the Tribeca Film Festival last year. While I like Kazan and Johnson, the plot seemed a bit too weird for my tastes. So I had thought to skip it. Thankfully good word of mouth won me over, and I gave The Pretty One a chance. I'm so glad I did. It was one of the most enjoyable movies I saw in the TFF slate of 2013, and it's beginning its theatrical run today. So you'll have a chance to see what makes The Pretty One so special. But in case you need more convincing, below we're sharing three clips that feature Kazan and Johnson being all kinds of adorable:
The Pretty One is now open in New York. It will open in new cities on February 21st.