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First published in 2001, Toby Young’s memoir, How To Lose Friends & Alienate People, charts Young’s move from London to New York to become a contributing editor at the highly prestigious magazine Vanity Fair. Fired less than two years later, the memoir hilariously captures Young’s failed attempt to take Manhattan by storm.
PROFANITY: 30 F-words, 6 S-words, a number of others. SEX/NUDITY: Female/male nudity during sexy dancing. VIOLENCE: Slaps and hits. DRUGS/ALCOHOL: Alcohol, tobacco, cocaine. ACTION: One big fight. COMEDY: Wisecracks, slapstick, raunchy gags, animal humor.
Berardinelli, Internet CriticFull Review Above Average The film's inability to decide whether it wants to be sweet and life-affirming or vicious and nasty creates not only a disconnect on the story level but results in tonal shifts that are dizzying. By trying to obey two masters, How to Lose Friends ends up serving neither with enough faithfulness to earn it a recommendation as either a parody or a lighthearted love story.
Roger EbertFull Review Very Good What you'd expect from the upward-bound-young-man formula would be a Machiavellian schemer. What you get in "How to Lose Friends" is a flywheel who embarrasses his magazine at every opportunity. Why? He detests the celebrity culture he has been hired to write about, and has some half-baked idea that he is attacking it through acts of self-destruction.
USA TodayFull Review Average There are a few spot-on moments, particularly the host-and-parasite relationship between stars and scribes, and the publicists who foster the feeding. But every time Friends gets on a roll, it shudders to a halt with screwball humor. Those are the kind of scenes that lose fans and alienate moviegoers.
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