BY SARAH MILES
Date Released: June 25, 2004
Date Watched: June 15, 2014
Why now? Well a ten year anniversary seems like a decent enough time to check something out. Plus with the way Ryan Gosling has really taken off and with his directorial debut imminent, might as well go back to check out his earlier film work.
Why not then? I think teenage me was at that stage where she was getting tired of romance films. I’m pretty sure she was way more into reading Interview with the Vampire for the third time.
- Your typical boy from the wrong side of the tracks and upper-class girl love story. No surprises.
- Possibly some scene of Ryan Gosling looking all rugged and shirtless fixing or building something to show us he’s manly, followed by a scene of him drawing or writing to show us that he’s sensitive as well.
- Big dramatic romantic gestures.
- An ending that’s cheesy but still makes me cry because I’m actually a sap like that.
- Rachel McAdams being really good and adorable, and making me wonder why I haven’t really seen her get a smart, well-written role since Mean Girls
What I actually got:
- He was reading poetry, I was so close.
- The wraparound story is probably the best part and I was surprised by how much it engaged me. It’s kind of a shame that the story of their past, the bulk of the film, is so bland and predictable. It didn’t give their present relationship context for me; the set-up of the person you love most not being able to remember you and you doing everything to try to connect with them again is simple, heartfelt and tragic all on its own.
- Damn, James Marsden can never catch a break. Does he ever get the girl?
- Yeah, I cried, but again that was down to the wraparound story, not anything to do with young Noah and Allie.
- Rachel McAdams you are so much better than this.
One night stand or second date potential?
It was basically what I expected: a by-the-numbers romance. The only surprise was how depressing the ending got before delivering the final, predictable, “love is stronger than life or death” conclusion. I didn’t hate it, it’s nowhere near the most egregious offender of cliché-ridden storytelling I’ve seen, but it’s not exactly going to be at the top of my list for movie night any time soon.