Boston's Alternative Source! image!

R: ARCHIVE, S: REVIEWS, D: 09/05/1996,


The title is a pun, albeit a lame one: Ed (Matt Ross) strategically relocates to Manhattan from the land of "cows, grass, cheese, and space" (Wisconsin) after being dumped by his girlfriend. Now a rice geneticist (!) in the big city, this young Midwestern transplant has to endure expensive cabs, a roommate (Kevin Carroll) given to practicing karate in the nude, and neighbors who settle minor disturbances with firearms. The good news is that Ed keeps running into Lee (Callie Thorne), a bar-band violinist with whom he begins an implausible romance.

What's ostensibly screwball about this comedy are the white farmboy's encounters with a slew of heavily accented, multi-ethnic New Yorkers. "You're so, um, normal," Lee tells Ed by way of a compliment, even though his desperate methods of courtship suggest a mix of stalker and dweeb. When the jokes aren't sexual or xenophobic, Ed's sense of humor is merely strained -- as when the young lovers' first date becomes nightmarish on account of two dead mice and a regurgitated ball of cat hair. Screens at the Copley Place at 5:40, 7:40, and 9:40 p.m., and on Friday at 10:50 a.m. and 1 and 3:10 p.m. Director John Walsh will appear at tonight's 7:40 p.m. showing.

-- Rob Nelson