Enjoying ‘Love and War’ in Film

Category: P.S. I Love You Reviews | Posted by: stagewomanjen
Article Date: January 10, 2008 | Publication: Cedar City Review | Author: Ann Staples
Publication/Article Link:http://www.cedarcityreview.com/articles.php?id=4151&art_title=Enjoying_‘Love_and_War’_in_Film

Life is filled with love and war on a variety of levels. We can't escape it, so let's embrace them both in the movie theaters with two very different stories.
Both movies have multiple Oscar winners on board. Both are thought provoking in things that should matter to us.
"P.S. I Love You"
"P.S. I Love You" is a different turn in many ways. It is an old-fashioned movie without special effects that targets a more mature audience that understands love, relationships, and loss.
What a concept! It is also a turn for the lead actors in roles that we are not used to seeing them in. National critics are bashing the actors and story line. I disagree.
Two-time Oscar-winner Hilary Swank does a fine job as the young wife who is frustrated with her life. She is waiting for it to start and for her dreams to begin. She wants a bigger house, better job, maybe children, and for her husband to have his career take off.
Oh, and she wants him to read her mind all the time so he knows what to say, when to say it, and how she feels at any given moment! Her husband, Gerry, is an Irish charmer who loves his wife and appreciates every day with her. He believes that their lives are going in the right direction already.
Then the bomb hits. Gerry dies from a brain tumor, leaving Holly a young widow who realizes that she missed out on living and loving every moment when she had it.
Scottish actor Gerad Butler is known for his brawn in "300" and his tortured soul in "Phantom of the Opera." In "P.S. I Love You" Butler is a sensitive, kind, and sexy husband who adores his wife. He tries to take care of her in life and in death.
Watching Holly grieve is so painful. But it is reality and something that we all have to deal with. Her mother and two best girlfriends are there for her every step of the way.
That cast includes Oscar-winner Kathy Bates, Lisa Kudrow ("Friends"), Gina Gershon, and a strange kind of guy played by the very talented musician turned actor, Harry Connick Jr.
As Holly sinks deeper into her loss and loneliness she is surprised when letters turn up from Gerry. He thought ahead before his passing on what his dear Holly would need. Through his letters he communicated his love by sending her on pre-planned excursions that would help her navigate into her new life without him.
A few flashbacks give us some of their history. Sometimes Holly "feels" Gerry in their apartment during her quiet times alone. My heart ached for her, I laughed with her, and applauded the concept of working through this process while still holding your loved one near.
"P.S. I Love You" shows the importance of family and good friends in times of loss and how their persistence in pulling the person dealing with loss back into life is vital. The scene where Holly is hiding out with her memories, wearing her husband’s clothes and jewelry, was so touching.
Those national critics be darned! I liked Swank and Butler in these roles. They were refreshing. Most of the "regular" folks that I have talked to that have seen this movie either really liked it or loved it.
Is this a chick flick? Yes. Will men like it? Yes. One newly married man admitted to me that he cried like a baby in the theater.
Take a moment out of your busy life to see this and be touched by the realization that we need to appreciate the moments we have with our loved ones in the here and now. You never know what tomorrow will bring.
And if you are one that is currently dealing with new loss and grief, you may want to think twice about seeing this now. It may be too raw and you should wait until it comes out on DVD and you can decide if you are ready.
This "PG-13" is not for the young teen crowd. P.S., I give it a B+.