There are times that the only reason I end up going to see a film is because Hilts and Emma-hen are going and I would find myself losing sleep over the fact that they were in attendance at the cinema without me. Admittedly it is a rather childish philosophy even by my immature standards but it does mean that I get to see movies that would otherwise pass me by. I would never have seen The Blind Side if it wasn’t for them and today I found myself sitting in premier seating (where else) to watch Letters to Juliet.
PLOT: Sophie (Amanda Seyfried) and her fiancé Victor (Gael Garcia Bernal) go on a pre-wedding honeymoon to Verona. Sophie is ditched by Victor who would prefer to go and look at truffles rather than spend any quality time with his betrothed. Whilst walking around Verona Sophie stumbles upon the Wall of Juliet, of Romeo and Juliet fame, which is filled with letters to Juliet (duh). Due to her brazened nosiness, or perhaps she just wanted company after being ditched on holiday, Sophie meets the Secretary’s of Verona who are a group of four locals who reply to the letters. After responding to a letter from Claire (Vanessa Redgrave) which was written fifty years ago Claire and her grandson Charlie appear in Verona after a suspiciously short time frame in order to locate her first love - the Italian postal service appears to be much more efficient than the Royal Mail. Sophie, Claire and Charlie travel around Italy looking for Claire’s lost love Lorenzo, which, according to the film is such a popular name in Italy the Irish equivalent would be entering a crowded bar and screaming out “Paddy” naively expecting the exact Paddy to appear. Sophie and Charlie fight. Sophie and Charlie become friends. Claire finally meets Lorenzo. Sophie dumps Victor. There is a miscommunication between Sophie and Charlie which almost ruins any prospect of a meaningful relationship. The miscommunication is clarified. Charlie and Sophie, Lorenzo and Claire all live happily ever after in a Bertolli advertisement. END PLOT
Letters to Juliet is not the sort of movie I would normally go for. As time is ticking on I appear to be getting more sentimental when it comes to enjoying films and I think that crying during The Blind Side (poor Michael never had a bed until he met Sandra Bullock) has worryingly broken the damn and if I am being honest I didn’t mind watching the film at all.
The plot is by no means original but Amanda Seyfried has the charisma and likeability to carry the movie and with Vanessa Redgrave adding some acting class you do find yourself getting lost in the story even though you know exactly how it is going to end. During the great “Sophie/Charlie Declaration of Love” scene Charlie fell off the balcony due to his British clumsiness and wise Hilts commented that if he had died at that particular moment it would have made the movie a bit more shocking. This sarcastic remark was the most entertaining of the entire 90mins.
There are a few light hearted moments mostly in the form of stiff upper class British snobbery but they do fit in well with the cast.
If the plot doesn’t appeal to you then go and see the movie just for the scenery. I know Italy is not made up of dusty single lane roads (there were no cars in the movie other than the Charlie drove) with vineyards on either side but it did look pretty. I will be in Florence this day three weeks time (however will you all cope without my weekend blogging one wonders…) and Letters to Juliet has managed to increase my excitement.
The sound track was filled with Italian versions of well known songs such as I’m a Believer. I will be taking a good look at the soundtrack whenever it appears on I-Tunes although it may only have worked with the film
Letters to Juliet gets a 6/10. I cant imagine I will rent it and I certainly wouldn’t buy it but if I catch Letters to Juliet on television in a couple of years time then I may watch it if there is nothing else on. Letters to Juliet was predictable, cheesy and 100% unoriginal but it killed a Saturday afternoon quite nicely which save it from being returned to sender.