Ken's Review: P.S. I Love You - Warning: Single Guys Stay Away
by Ken Evans
December 26, 2007
It's definitely hard to write a review for a romantic film like P.S. I Love You. It's especially tough when your wife loved it and you thought it was only ok. The other rough part is when it is getting blasted by critics everywhere who thought it was horrible, while you actually thought it was a bit enjoyable. I would consider myself much more open and receptive to the romantic film genre then most of the guys I know. I have a weak spot for the romantic comedies like Notting Hill and You've Got Mail. Even a more serious romance like The Notebook is one of my favorite films. Hopefully I can shed some light on to why P.S. I Love You can still be an enjoyable film while at the same time have some major flaws.
P.S. I Love You is about Holly Kennedy (Hilary Swank) dealing with the death of her husband Gerry Kennedy (Gerard Butler). Holly takes his death extremely hard and shuts herself off from her friends and the rest of the world. However, a short time after his funeral Holly starts to receive letters from Gerry that he had written before he died. It turns out that each letter is part of an elaborate plan that would end up taking Holly everywhere from a karaoke bar in New York City to Gerry's parent's house in Ireland. All these letters, whose purpose is to assist in helping Holly, deal with her grieving and ultimately release her so that she can get on living her life.
Hilary Swank is what I had the biggest problem with. It's not that she can't act because we know from Million Dollar Baby that she can. Even in P.S. I Love You her performance is fine. It's just that Swank is great at the intense dramas but just can't pull off the romantic, cute role like Meg Ryan or Julia Roberts. I just couldn't get past the tomboy that Swank usually plays and inherently exudes every time I look at her. Hopefully Swank will stick with the serious dramas and stay away from the cute romantic roles in the future.
Gerard Butler was great the few times we see him. It was interesting seeing him play a funny, wacky kind of guy. I wouldn't mind seeing him in romantic comedy opposite Kate Hudson eventually. Harry Connick Jr. was hilarious and extremely awkward. Although I liked his character it didn't seem to fit with the circumstances or theme of the film. Lisa Kudrow also provided some comic relief as one of Swank's girlfriends. She was funny but seems to always end up playing the same quirky character that she played in "Friends".
This film hooks you in with its famous names and unique concept. Unfortunately, it fails to deliver anything original beyond the letters that Swank's character continues to get. The film can't decide whether it's a comedy or a drama. It feels like what happened was the writers realized how sad this story really is and decided to throw in a bit of laughter to lighten the mood. This is where the film truly failed. The transitions from laughter to sadness were so abrupt that it lost all sense of reality. Just when I would start to connect with her grief, I lost it and was expected to laugh at something a character was doing. It starts off as a romance but ends up being a very sad drama with some humor thrown in. It was very confusing.
Even with the confusion I didn't walk out hating it. It truly was a sad story, and I appreciated what Butler's character was trying to do with the letters. I really enjoyed Harry Connick's character and thought he was very funny although weird. Compared to other chick-flicks this doesn't rate very high. If I hadn't been with my wife, I wouldn't have liked it as much, but seeing her laugh at the girly parts actually made me laugh and enjoy it more. So, if you're looking for a good date movie this Christmas or a movie for a ladies night out, then you can't go wrong with P.S. I Love You.
Reader Feedback - 12 Comments
It's Notting Hill =)
Jared on Dec 26, 2007
ehhh it was ok...i agree with the rating...it could have been better..
sixth on Dec 26, 2007
I loved this movie, it made my heart melt 7/10
Rico on Dec 26, 2007
I agree with you, Hilary Swank is not made for romantic dramas/comedies of any kind. She is not girly in appearance...she has a very tough looking face, strong, tomboyish. If you are going to cast her in a romantic lead role, pick a character that suits her look. Or, perhaps, put her in an action picture with a romance on the side...not as the focus of the film.
Movie Freak on Dec 27, 2007
I never expected to walk out of this movie thinking it was going to move me......BUT, it did. I thought the emotions, actions and comedic intervals were perfectly timed. Just when i wanted to bust a tear, there would be Harry or Lisa's characters with some funny/silly comment. I cannot believe the critics trashed this movie....we loved it. This is definately a DVD purchase when it comes out...
Softy on Jan 2, 2008
PS I LOVE YOU...brilliant film i watched it last night and cried the whole way threw it...gerry's accent could have been a bit better but well done everyone a good tear jerker glad i watched it....10 out of 10 from me!!!
mo on Jan 5, 2008
It was the best movie EVER!! I have never cried during a movie in my life. Way to go Gerard and Hilary! You did wonderful! 10 out of 10 from me as well!
kate on Jan 8, 2008
I think i review is wrong!!!! It was one of the best movies ever. So sweet, so charming, and its the kind of love everyone wishes they had!!! Its the type of movie were you are laughing through your tears. It would suck if it was only sad and depressing. I think the entire story is original, there really isn't any other movie like it. It doesn't end how your typical romantic movie ends and Hilary Swank does a great job, and Lisa Kudrow's character on freinds is someone who is crazy with a few screws loose and in ps i love you her character is not that same dingy personality. It really was a great movie, I love Gerard Butler!!! And the movie does have a grip on reality because we've all had those moments when were going through something sad and something funny will happen and you can't help but laugh! Just loved the movie!!!! P.S. everything I've seen as said the critics loved the movie
eli on Jan 10, 2008
i love this film i read the book first and i thought i would not like the film but i think that the film is a lot better than the book. The book is more doom and gloom where as the film has the comedy factor to it i thought the actors where good in it and i just loved every second of it. It is a film i could watch every day and never get bored of it has got to be one of the best films i have ever seen in my 26 years.
leanne on May 17, 2008
I feel like I'm resurrecting this review, as no comments have been posted in almost seven months, but I have just seen the movie for the first time and wanted to add my own two cents here for anyone that is looking for reviews to decide whether or not to watch it. First off, I actually had no idea what this movie was about. I saw it on a list of 100 romantic movies not to miss and decided to get it and watch it without reading a single review or even the back of the box. I'm so glad I did! I'm not a professional in the cinema field, I'm not a critic. I'm just your average person who likes movies and this is definitely a movie not to miss. Some of the problems I saw, reading reviews after watching the movie, is that a lot of critics don't like the comedy or feel it's misplaced or even an afterthought. No way. Think about real life... just take a moment and really think. When something terrible happens in your life, life still goes on around you. Just because you are absolutely devastated because of a loss of some sort doesn't mean that at sometime when you least expect it, something can't happen to make you smile. I was served with divorce papers not long back and was a mess - it was a complete surprise, as my marriage seemed fine to me and even to those around me. Later the same evening, while I was lost in my tears and worrying about the future, a friend said something and it made me laugh. Here I am, my life turned upside down in an instant, and still laughter managed to find it's way from me. I think that's what I really enjoy most about this movie. One minute, you're in tears because of what is happening, and while you're still sniffling and wiping your eyes, suddenly something funny happens and BAM... laughter. Still can't decide to get the movie or not? Here's some advice: If you're female, get it, and bring tissues. If you're a male, get it if only for this quote from the movie... Daniel: "I don't mean to throw this at you from left field, but what do women want? I mean, I can't figure it out. They want us to ask? They don't want us to ask? They want us to make a move? Not make a move? They want us to be on bottom? They want us to be on top? Use hair products? Don't use hair products? What do you people want?!" Guys, you get the "sacred secret" here. It's worth getting the movie just to know that little tidbit. But it's also worth getting it to watch it all the way through with that special someone in your life. Just make sure later to tell her, "If I know I'm going to die, honey, I'm going to do something like this too." Guaranteed "awww's" from her on that, and maybe some other interesting noises as well. 😉
Teresa on Dec 13, 2008
best movie ever !!! , i cried and cried and cried , and had a few laughs =) , 10 out of 10
nicole on Apr 26, 2009
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