Starring: Scott Eastwood, Britt Robertson, Alan Alda, Oona Chaplin, Jack Huston, Melissa Benoist (Rated M – 128 min).
Here we go again, an old-fashioned romance of star-crossed lovers where tears will flow as natural emotions run rampant during this latest adaptation from a Nicholas Sparks novel.
Modern day cowboy and former champion rodeo rider Luke (Scott Eastwood) has no interest in falling in love, only an ongoing determination to conquer the violently aggressive nature of a bull named Rango. Into his life comes Sophie (Britt Robertson) who is about to land her dream job within the New York art world. The pair could not be any different but a Summer fling begins and on their way home from a first dinner date, the affectionate couple take an unscheduled stop to help a distressed elderly man Ira (Alan Alda) in a ditch after a car accident.
Although they don’t know it yet, fate intervenes and during his recovery in hospital, Sophie reads a bunch of letters to Ira involving a turbulent past of a World War and his one true love Ruth. Spanning generations, two intersecting tales are woven using narratives past and present, happiness pours down as will the tears.
From The Notebook, Safe Haven to Dear John, all Nicholas Sparks stories follow a particular formula and nothing much changes here complete with another surprise ending of pure indulgence that fans will no doubt talk about when the crying stops long after the end credits roll.
The pedigree of old school Hollywood royalty gives this an extra edge of class. Co-star Oona Chaplin is grand daughter of silent film maestro Charlie, while Jack Huston is the grandson of legendary director John, they star as young Ruth and Ira in the flashbacks respectively.
Transition of the time periods is key and they flow into each other with ease. However those not used to the Nicholas Sparks tenure of calculated responses and close ups, the pace is mediocre at best. It may just be the longest 128 minutes of their life.
Genuine chick-flick that is perfect for a girl’s night out, especially as Scott Eastwood, son of the man with no name himself Clint, has his shirt off a-lot and disperses country boy charm with ease. I usually enjoy a good diverting romance and this is no exception. Be warned, this is a tale heart-wrenching made to tap into emotions, take in a box of tissues.
Shane A. BassettSydney Unleashed is one of Australia’s premier entertainment publications exploring the latest in lifestyle trends. From Sydney’s finest restaurants, cafes and bars to the hottest in gadgets, products, and home entertainment, Sydney Unleashed is your one-stop lifestyle platform.