There is a rightful place for lovey dovey flicks in modern theatres, one that has been leeching off of author Nicolas Sparks with declining success. As confectionery cinema goes, this latest Sparks adaptation is another massive wad of candy floss that will satisfy those with a fluffy romantic sweet tooth while the rest will likely suffer from indigestion. More
Katie (Julianne Hough) arrives in a breezy small town after narrowly escaping the clutches of a detective, wanted for reasons unknown. Intent on keeping her past a secret, she develops a bond with the widowed Alex (Josh Duhamel), his ridiculously adorable daughter and his sookie-face son. Hough and Duhamel share a playful chemistry that keeps the movie hovering slightly above the lacklustre line. Credit should also go to Aussie actor David Lyons as the detective in pursuit, managing to give more depth to the character than the script did.
The film presents some interesting story threads that aren’t given enough time to develop (especially the distance between Alex’s and his still-grieving son). Instead, we are treated to segments of Katie riding a bike, building sand castles and painting her kitchen floor. It’s as enthralling as it sounds.
When the ball ultimately drops between Katie and Alex, it takes the most irritatingly clichéd route, bypassing any intention for either character to solve the issue through understanding. Be prepared for these overused phrases: “Let me explain,” “I trusted you,” “You don’t understand,” and “I think you should leave”.
Safe Haven concludes on a more enjoyably intense note that sidesteps the ‘get a man to fight your battles’ moral before presenting a hilariously mishandled plot twist that’d make M. Night Shyamalan cringe. Hide