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At Theaters: 7/18/2003 On Video: 12/9/2003
Rated: PG-13 Length: 1 hr. 41 min.
Internet: Web Site Movie ID: 419925
Studio: New Line Cinema
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Notes: 
Storyline Heading
Halley, a young high school student is disillusioned with love after seeing the many dysfunctional relationships around her. But when a tragic event in her life leads to a romantic encounter with a young man, Halley realizes the possibility of true love can sometimes lie in the most unconventional of places.
DETAILED STORYLINE
.
Movie Type (Genre) Heading
Comedy Romantic - A teen drama that's heavy on the "my life is so bad" teen self pity. Fortunately, it has a decent amount of humor throughout the movie to help offset all this heavy drama.
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Cast and Crew Heading
Mandy Moore A WALK TO REMEMBER
Allison Janney THE HOURS, AMERICAN BEAUTY
Peter Gallagher MR. DEEDS, CENTER STAGE, HOUSE ON HAUNTED HILL
Alexandra Holden SUGAR AND SPICE, WISHCRAFT
Trent Ford SLAP HER...SHE'S FRENCH
Director: Clare Kilner JANICE BEARD: 45WPM
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Production Notes Heading
About The Production
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Content Heading
PROFANITY: 1 F-word, 3 S-words, 1 A-word. Just a few milder ones.
SEX/NUDITY: Some fooling around and implied sexual activity.
VIOLENCE: None
DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Some drunkenness and marijuana smoking (by old lady).
ACTION: None
COMEDY: Contains some very funny scenes. Several are laugh-out-loud funny.
DETAILED CONTENT
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Critic's Review Heading
Poor

The above rating is an average of the critic reviews below.

(Close new window when finished with Full Reviews)

Roger Ebert  Full Review
Average "What the movie establishes above all is that Mandy Moore has a future in the movies, maybe even in the horror film she's making with Wes Craven. She has that ease in front of the camera that makes you think she's the real thing. "The secret of acting," George Burns said, "is sincerity. If you can fake that, you've got it made." Mandy Moore has it made, and the thing is, I don't think she's faking.''

USA TODAY  Full Review
Below Average "How to Deal is no big deal. In fact, it resembles a second-rate TV movie. The main thing it's good for is showcasing the bona fide acting talents of pop singer Mandy Moore. Moore and Ford rise above the hackneyed story, infusing the proceedings with their own chemistry and appeal. If only the adults responsible for this film could learn how to deal.''

TV Guide Online  Full Review
Poor "A muddled mess of melodrama and annoying teenage behavior...  To call this scattered and cliché-ridden film less-than-cohesive would be generous, and Moore lacks the ability to imbue hackneyed dialogue with resonance. Her Halley is a poster child for shallow teen angst, and it's hard to empathize with a character who seems like a spoiled, unsympathetic brat who's so supremely self-involved that everyone's feelings take a back seat to her own.''

Newsday  Full Review
Very Poor "Uh, this teen love story - in which the girl with the fewest problems is meant to deserve our deepest sympathy - could be called a soap opera, if you wanted to insult opera. Or soap. Mindless and lazy. ...a movie which you will find almost unbearable unless you are 1. already a huge Mandy Moore fan, 2. 12 years old or 3. clinically dead."

Note: The rating above is our interpretation of what the critic would give this movie based on their review. We are not affiliated with these critic's in any way.

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Opinion Heading

Based on an Exit Polling of 166 Moviegoers

Ages Age Group
How
Many
Your Probability of
Enjoying This Movie
*
Would
Recommend
Movie To Friends
13-19Teens (M)
11
Fairly High
91%
13-19Teens (F)
85
Very High
96%
20-29Yg Adults (M)
7
Fairly High
86%
20-29Yg Adults (F)
37
Fairly High
79%
30+Adults (M)
2
Very Low
0%
30+Adults (F)
24
Fairly High
100%
*Possible Ratings: Very High, High, Fairly High, About 50/50, Fairly Low, Low, Very Low.

About Our Opinions

Be sure to read the DETAILED OPINIONS
The positive and negative comments made by moviegoers are very
helpful when selecting a movie that's appropriate for you and your family.

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OPINION GRAPH

OPINION OVERVIEW
The following is the original "What's Worth Watching" write-up for this movie.

Moviegoer Opinions:

Certainly not the best opinions I've ever seen. The movies target audience of teen and twentysomething females rated it quite high and they are really the main ones that count anyway. For them I can certainly recommend How To Deal. I'm certain the vast majority of them will enjoy it very much.

Adult females aren't too far behind the younger females. Their opinions were much more in the average to slightly above average range. So this would make a good mother daughter bonding movie.

As for the guys, the younger ones rated it about like the adult females, which is fairly good. There weren't really enough male opinions to get an accurate gauge. I would say you could probably bring your male friend to see this movie without too much worry, but it would have to be a guy that tends to enjoy these types of movies.

Cinema Review Prediction: (before moviegoer opinions are collected)
Ladies, this movie's for you. All ages should enjoy it, but it will likely find its biggest audience with teens. I don't feel that many females will love How To Deal, because there's nothing especially unique of moving about the story, but I do feel nearly all females will be sufficiently entertained.

Now for the guys. I'm a guy (but certainly not a teen) and I thought the movie was somewhat entertaining, but I certainly wouldn't have been willing to pay full ticket price to see it. If you've got to see it with your lady, I doubt that you will find it too painful or boring (but it wouldn't hurt to fake it a bit so you get to pick the next movie:-).


D ETAILED S TORYLINE
Sometimes life gets turned upside down. And maybe that's why it's so hard to believe that anyone, especially 17 year-old Halley Martin (Mandy Moore), could actually experience that thing called love.

The people closest to Halley are in the midst of major upheavals in their love lives. Her mother, Lydia (Allison Janney), is embittered by her recently finalized divorce. Her sister, Ashley (Mary Catherine Garrison), is marrying a guy with whom she is constantly fighting. Her best friend, Scarlett (Alexandra Holden), can't keep her hands off of her first serious boyfriend. Most distressingly for Halley, her father, Len (Peter Gallagher), who is a DJ at a local radio station, combats his midlife crisis with a stereotypically boyish elopement to the station's much-younger traffic reporter.

So how's Halley supposed to deal? She isn't about to let herself succumb to the pipe dream of storybook romance, and Macon Forrester (Trent Ford) is the one guy who challenges her idea that love just complicates a perfectly good friendship. As Halley's life grows more and more complicated, she finds a friend in Macon, but when she feels herself falling for him, will Halley move beyond her fears and disappointments to experience real love?
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