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P.S. I Love You (PG-13) ** | Romantic comedy's super-sweet date movie

Category: P.S. I Love You Reviews
Article Date: December 21, 2007 | Publication: miamiherald.com | Author: Rick Bentley
Source: http://www.miamiherald.com/1054/story/351364.html

Posted by: stagewomanjen


Seeing P.S. I Love You is like dating someone new and having to put up with all of their annoying friends. As long as you can focus on the main relationship, everything progresses at a sweet pace.

The heart of this helium-light romantic comedy is Holly Kennedy (Hilary Swank) and her husband Gerry (Gerard Butler). Holly dated only one other person before she married Gerry nine years ago. Growing old together seemed the course their love boat was sailing.

Then Gerry dies and Holly finds herself drowning in despair. Her friends and family cannot shake Holly from this deep depression. But just before he died, Gerry penned a series of notes designed to help Holly get on with her life.

Swank turns in a passable performance as Holly. It's hard to watch her and not think about how an actress like Jennifer Garner could have given the performance a little more depth, especially if you saw Garner's Catch and Release, a film with a similar theme. Swank never comes across as being completely comfortable in this role.

The best scenes are those that feature Swank and Butler, whether they're flashbacks or just the romantic fantasies of Holly's imagination. This is an 180-degree change for Butler from his brutal turn in 300, but he has the Irish charm to make this role work.

Had the focus just been the two lovers, the film would have been a romantic tale for the ages. The problem is all of the peripheral characters. Lisa Kudrow is reduced to playing another version of her character from Friends. Harry Connick Jr.'s role as a suitor with no social skills is more painful than playful, and Gina Gershon is wasted as Holly's rather normal best friend.

There have been some major changes from the original novel by Cecelia Ahern, including the addition of all of the sequences in the United States. Director Richard LaGravenese was smart enough to keep some of the Irish elements of the book, and those are some of the better moments in the film.

Like most love affairs, this is not a perfect effort. But the flood of new films opening for the holidays, P.S. I Love is without a doubt the best date movie of the bunch.

 


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