I loved My Date with Drew. Yes, it's a documentary, but it is very funny and personable and even a little bit inspirational. We all had crushes on celebrities during our youth (and some of us, as adults, still do), and we all dreamed of meeting the superstar objects of our affections. At 27, Brian Herzlinger still had a life-long crush on Drew Barrymore. When he won eleven hundred bucks on a game show (with Drew Barrymore as the winning answer - that's fate, that is), he decided to use the money to pursue a dream - his dream of a date with Drew. Yes, seeing as how he was unemployed at the time, he probably should have used the money for more practical things - bills, for example - but the guy had a dream and he went for it (which is more than a lot of us can say). Thanks to a retailer's policy of letting you return purchases after thirty days, he got himself a camera, assembled all of his friends, and filmed his efforts to win a date with Drew within 30 days. Is it possible for a nobody to get a date with one of the most famous people on the planet? The odds were definitely against him. The ups and downs of his personal quest certainly make for a uniquely entertaining experience, one which most of us can identify with in a number of ways.
Brian was a nobody, but he wasn't as big a nobody as, well me, for example. As an aspiring filmmaker, he was already out there in Hollywood fluttering around the fringes of the business, he knew several people with movie-related jobs and a range of connections, and he had a great network of friends who supported him as well as helped him with the technological aspects of the whole documentary he was making on the experience. I thought Brian himself was quite likeable; watching him bounce back and forth between euphoria and resignation as events unfolded cannot help but take you back down memory lane a little ways. It's not an auspicious beginning as Brian asks strangers on the street for help and advice, but his crew of supporters takes the project in hand and commences a full-court press of an effort. They talk to people in the business, as well as folks who know someone who knows someone who knows Drew; they land interviews with the writer of Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Corey Feldman, and others who actually know Drew; they contact the folks at Drew's company; and everything else they can think of (which eventually includes a web site and radio interviews). Brian even goes so far as to hire a Drew look-alike for a practice date to build up his confidence (it does the opposite, by the way, with the date critique supplying some of the funniest moments in the film). All the while, Plan B consists of getting Brian in to meet Drew at the premiere of Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle.
I had a ball watching this documentary. Yes, it looks like an amateur documentary because that is what it is. Eleven hundred bucks isn't going to buy you the best equipment and cameramen, you know. I won't tell you how it all works out because it really is the journey that matters most. One can criticize Brian for having a date with Drew rather than, say, world peace, as his biggest goal in life, but what matters is that he had the guts to go for it just as hard as he possibly could, risking embarrassment (and lots of it) and impending financial gloom and doom in the process. No matter what our own goals are, how many of us can say the same?
on December 4, 2007
This is a MUST see documentary. It embodies everything could could want in a well written screenplay, yet surpasses anything ever written. The reason is is that art imitates life, so why not watch someone live his real life dream and be inspired by it? Laugh, be encouraged, and maybe even cry in this incredible and exuberant true story of a normal guy's pursuit of the heavanly, yet down to earth Drew Barrymore.