Nicholas Sparks has done it again after his success on the books made into movies like The Lucky One, The Notebook, Safe Haven, Dear John, and the Last Song. Directed by Michael Hoffman, this tear jerking movie is an awesome one if you’re in for a romantic journey of two people and their messy past.
The plot starts when the lead character Dawson (James Marden) returns to his hometown to attend the funeral of a friend. He’d actually left town many years ago in an attempt to avoid getting caught up in the ‘family business’.
This decision takes a toll on him as he never got to spend his life as planned with his college sweetheart, Amanda (Michelle Monaghan). However at the funeral, he bumps into Amanda too, who’s now married and moved on but sparks fly as soon as the two are near each other. Will the two end up being together or will heartbreak strike again?
The storyline jumps between the past and present leading to the moment that tore the two apart. The sub-plot involving Dawson’s extended family whose way of life is to achieve everything through crime. The families tries time and again to convince Dawson to take part, but as Dawson avoided his ‘family business’ it seems rather rushed and pointlessly overcooked when things could have been handled better. It’s a Nicholas Sparks novel so anything is possible.
The tone is mellow, the flirting of the light hearted and drenched with dollops of melodrama that leads to the craving for a long lost love. It’s like watching another cinematic version of your favourite magazine with beautiful people come to life.
The movie’s main effect towards you lies in the fact that it’s able to stretch out an emotion without actually revealing the reasons for the characters actions. It kills any opportunity of understanding the motivation of the characters for the longest period of time, since it wants to save all the action for the resolution for both past and present.
Fans of romantic film genres will find this superfluous. But fans from the previous masterpieces of Nicholas Sparks will definitely find that this film is impeccable. Have fun watching!