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The Notebook (DVD)
Member Name: Julie449
The Notebook (DVD)
Date: 21/07/12, updated on 24/07/12 (117 review reads)
Advantages: Beautiful, romantic movie, with great acting
Disadvantages: Some parts are a bit predictable
I picked this film up years ago, in one of those 2 for £10 dvd offers at my local HMV, however although I have been dying to watch it, it has sat on my dvd shelf just waiting to be played. Finally my husband and I decided to watch it, the other night, and have a bit of a romantic night in. I have heard lots about this film, that it was very romantic and was a bit of a tear jerker. I wasn't disappointed.
The Notebook is the 2004 romantic drama, based on the novel of the same name by Nicholas Sparks. The film is directed by Nick Cassavetes. The film has a running time of 118 mins approx. The dvd is rated a 15, however the main feature is only a 12, this is due to additional material on the dvd being classified at a higher certificate.
Ryan Gosling (yummy)
The film begins in present day, at a nursing home, where an elderly gentleman (James Garner) is reading a story from his 'Notebook' to another resident (Gena Rowlands). As he begins to read the story we are pulled into the story, and we are taken back to the 1940s to a town called Seabrook. Here we meet a young country boy named Noah (Ryan Gosling). Noah is at a carnival with his friends when he sees and is instantly attracted to Allie. Allie is from a wealthy background and is only in Seabrook for the Summer with her family. Noah dramatically introduces himself to Allie by jumping on to a moving ferris wheel, she is riding with someone else. Allie resists Noah servel times at first, until their friends who happen to be dating (courting as it was in those days) set them up on a double date at the movies. Noah and Aliie walk home together after the movie. They start to get to know each other a bit better, and Noah questions Allie about her privledged lifestyle, asks what is it that she wants to do, not what her parents want.
Allie soon falls head over her heels for Noah ( I did too), and the couple begin a whirlwind summer romance, with ups and downs, fights and make ups. Noah is invited to a dinner with Allie's parents and friends, and it is here that it becomes clear, they don't approve of Allie and Noah's relationship. This is due to Noah's class and how little he earns from his job at a lumber yard.
The young couple don't let this stop them and they enjoy the most of summer. One night Noah takes Allie to an abandoned house, that he has always dreamed of buying and doing up. Allie makes Noah promise that he will and to paint it white with blue shutters. Sadly there night is ruined when they are interrupted by Noah's friend Fin, who has come to warn them that Allie's parents and the police are out looking for her. Noh returns Allie home, only to have to hear Allie's parents call him trash. There is a huge arguement and the couple break up. Although they fight all the time, and soon make up, they are not given the chance to this time as Allie's parents pack up all there things and they head home, and Allie off to college in New York.
Years pass before the couple meet again, and in those years both have been through a lot of things and changes. Neither ever really knowing how the other had felt since that night they split. When they finally meet will that spark and passion they once had resurface?
The film flips betwen the story of Allie and Noah (the main part of the film) and the elderly man and woman in the nursing home. It quickly becomes clear that the woman in the nursing home suffers from Alzheimers disease, and the man reads her the story often.
The film ends differently to how I thought it was going to and although I felt throughout I knew what was coming, the ending adda a beautiful, yet sad twist.
I loved this film, even more than I thought I would. After seeing Ryan Gosling in Blue Valentine (see review) I had a new appreciation for his acting talent, and when I noticed it was Gosling in this film, I was hoping not to be disappointed, and I wasn't. His acting was fantastic in this and he played his character very well, I almost feel in love with Noah myself, and wished I was Allie. Goaling and McAdams have real chemistry and work together fantastically on this movie, and there relationship feels very real. I had sen McAdams in Time travellers wife and was quite inpressed with her, but I feel she is much better in this. All the characters are believeable.
The film is very captivating, and I hated when I had to pause it to nip to the loo, it was the quickest bathroom break possible. However the film is a little predictable but the ending adds a little bit of a twist. There are some beautiful romantic scenes throughout the film that made my heart melt, my favourite being where they are out rowing and get caught in the rain. The film leaves you feeling happy and sad all at once. It was truely beautiful.
The film is set in the 1940s pre and post war and pulls this look off very well, it made me feel I was born in the wrong era, the style of the clothes and the things they did for fun, are a far cry away from these days.
The film doesn't only explore the relationship of Allie and Noah, that of true love and first love, but we also see Allie and her mothers relationship being explored throughout.
I liked how the film flipped between past and present, as when in present time it gave me as a viewer the time to reflect and digest what has been happening between Noah and Allie and try to figure out how both parts of the story fit together.
The notebook tells the tale of love, class divides and tackles Alzheimers in a beautiful yet heart breaking way. I like how this is in there, as it is a subject not many films tackle, and adds a bit more to the story than just another love story.
One thing that stood out in the film for me, was that Noah always made Allie think about what it was she wants and not what will please others. I like this because it teaches Allie and us as viewers to follow our hearts.
I haven't read the novel yet, so I am unsure as to how the film compares, but I can't wait to read it and find out. The film received some fantastic reviews and some not so fantastic, but as a whole was well received. The dvd case features some of these review/quotes from reviews.
Dvd extras, when I really enjoy a movie I like to watch the dvd extras, and this dvd has lots to choose from.
There are some deleted/alternate scenes, 12 in total that can be watched with or without commentary. I watch all these scenes and I felt that they add a little more to my overall experience of the film, as some of these scenes told us more about certain characters and helped explain areas that the film itself doesn't. For example where Noh's mother is.
There is feature commentary with Nick Cassavetes the director, and also there is feature commentary with the novelist Nicholas Sparks.
There are 3 featurettes-
All in the family: Nick Cassavetes- this is all about the director
Nicholas Sparks a simple story well told- is all about the autor
Southern Exposure:locating the Notebook- is all about how they found the right location for filming, and all the things that needed to be done to make it look like 1940.
There is also a bit about casting which includes Rachel McAdams' screen test, and a movie trailer.
Overall a beautiful fantastic movie, that I am sure to watch again. The dvd has extras that are worth watching. I love this movie and would highly recommend it. It will make you cry, and even though most won't admit it, it will make the men in your life shed a tear or two as well.
This review is also on ciao under the same user name.
Summary: captivating love story with Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams