“It was the best of times; it was the worst times”. Words that might describe a male’s point of view after watching a Nicholas Sparks movie. It is the best of times because you make the one you love happy watching something they want to watch, while it is the worst of times, well because you have to actually watch the movie. Now before you say anything, I am a huge fan of romantic movies. I loved “Moulin Rouge”, “When Harry Met Sally”, and even “Titanic” so I am not some scrooge who hates stories about love and happiness. I will also say that I have never read a Nicholas Sparks novel, or seen any of the other movies, so I have but one reference, and that is “The Best of Me”
Dawson (James Marsden) is a quite man, who when not working on a oil rig enjoys reading physics books while looking at the night sky. Amanda (Michelle Monaghan) is a married woman who has a son that is about to go into college. What do these two people have to do with one another you might ask? Well they are in a Nicholas Sparks movie, so they must have been a great teenage love. It turns out that when they were younger, Dawson and Amanda were destined to be together, that was until something happened that tore them apart. They are brought back together when Dawson’s caretaker Tuck (Gerald McRaney) passes on and wants Dawson and Amanda to spread his ashes together. When they get back together and the wounds heal, it is like they were never apart, and pick up right where they left off. Morals then prevail and Amanda goes back to her family, only when she decides that she can’t be without Dawson, destiny has other plans for her.
I have heard all about Nicholas Sparks movies, and I have even seen one, “The Lucky One”, but from what I can tell the stories don’t change much. They have the quite misunderstood guy who looks great with he shirt off and then you have the girl whose parents are well off, and who always thinks their daughter can do better then the guy who she loves and have to be with. There is nothing wrong with that story right there, well unless you keep telling the same version of it over and over again, with only a change in location. This particular story was adapted for the screen by J.Miles Goodloe and Will Fetters and directed by Michael Hoffman (One Fine Day), but the only thing that matters is the source material, because that is why you are seeing this film. This is not a very good love story; in fact it is not a very good story at all. It has too many predictable outcomes, and gives you characters that you could care less about. Instead of reaching for a Kleenex, I had to muffle my laughter from the failed attempt to pull at my heartstrings. I am a single male, so I know that this movie is not for me, and while many out there will indeed enjoy this film, for me this was far from the best of anything.