Wednesday, June 24, 2015

The Longest Ride

Britt Robertson, Scott Eastwood,
Alan Alda, Oona Chaplin

In a moment of weakness, I started reading Nicholas Sparks' "The Longest Ride", digitally. I say weakness because his novels are not my cup of tea. I admit I'm too sarcastic for these types of stories. I only made it to chapter 7 then lost interest.  

Lucky for me, there is a movie version so I don't need to read it, anymore. In the novel, the pages shift between the love story of Sophia (Britt Robertson), a graduating college student and Luke (Scott Eastwood), a champion bull rider and the narrative of an older man named Ira who is reminiscing about his own love story.

The standard ingredients for a typical romantic film are present - instant chemistry between the couple, a stumbling block to their blossoming romance along with the predictable conclusion -  boy and girl live happily, ever after. 

Actually, I found Ira (Alan Alda) and Ruth's (Oona Chaplin) love story and their life together much more interesting than that of Sophia and Luke. I was especially drawn to their inability to have children as I'm basically in the same boat. A sob story angle thrown into the loop is guaranteed to bring in the poignancy factor as well as some tears.

Naturally this begs the question "if a love story makes you cry, does this mean it was effective in sending its message across to the viewers?"  Well for me, it does. But given that I tend to cry easily especially when I can relate with the dire situation the characters encounter onscreen, perhaps it is best I don't use this factor as a strong basis for a successful narrative.

As for the cast, I like the onscreen chemistry between Clint Eastwood's carbon copy of a son and Britt Robertson. Never mind that Scott Eastwood still needs to take some acting lessons to further hone his craft. He is quite pleasing to the eyes so I can forego his awkwardness, for now! 

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