Movie Synopsis: A Marine travels to North Carolina after serving three tours in Iraq and searches for the unknown woman he believes was his good luck charm during the war.
My Review: “The Lucky One” is the film adaptation of the Nicholas Sparks novel, titled the same. It is a story about one soldier’s savior, a photograph of a young a woman in front of a lighthouse – a woman that he does not know, but attributes to his safety.
Returning from his third tour of duty, U.S. soldier Logan Thibault (Zac Efron) returns to North Carolina to find he is unable to acclimate. Leaving with little more than his backpack and his dog, he ventures off to find the woman in the photograph, hoping to find closure, by thanking her for unknowingly becoming his guardian. When he finally finds her, he is unable to express his intent and instead resorts to accepting a rut job helping her out at her dog boarding kennel. From there, Logan begins to lay roots as he finds himself falling in love with the single mother, Beth (Taylor Schilling) and her young son, Ben (Riley Thomas Stewart) while Beth herself, after being in an unfaithful relationship, learns to trust and care for Logan. However, not with the blessing of Ben’s biological father, who verges on the edge of abusive, doing everything he can to threaten Beth and Logan’s budding relationship. In the end, the film is about letting go and moving on, learning to rely on others again to help heal deep wounds; Beth and her past experiences with her ex-husband and Logan’s traumatic stress from the war.
Overall, I thought the film was very good. Actually better than I thought it would have been (since I did not care for The Vow, to which they kept comparing the film too) and Efron definitely carried his weight in his performance. Truth be told, his earlier performance in the film of a soldier suffering from post traumatic stress was very moving and believable and I could have watched an entire film just on his ventures, if needed be. But, the film is based off a Sparks novel, and for those fans of Sparks’ novels, the stories center on the rough tribulations of life and the relationships that are hurt by such.
In the end, I felt the plot was very predictable in its journey but appreciated it nonetheless. And though the ending was a bit much for its overall tone, was rewarded just the same with a good, romantic film. “The Lucky One” was a solid movie with good acting and likeable characters. I wanted to see them succeed and I wanted to see them grow and “The Lucky One” delivered.
Since I do not have half stars here, I am giving it four, though it does verge on three and half due its formulaic predictable plot. But ironically, it is Efron himself, that steers me toward the four stars because all in all, I really did enjoy the movie and that's mainly all you can ask when you go to see a film. Was I blown away? Not really. Was I moved by the film? I think I was. And so I say, if you had any inclination to see this film, it's worth your time and you should definitely get out there and see it.
“The Lucky One” hits theaters nationwide today April 20, 2012.
Cast and Credit:
Directed by Scott Hicks
Zac Efron – Logan
Taylor Schilling – Beth
Blythe Danner – Ellie
Riley Thomas Stewart – Ben
Jay R. Ferguson – Keith