Tearjerker: a film that tugs on heart strings making its audience emotionally involved in major characters and plot points. A film that gives you goosebumps and that warm feeling in your soul.
The Notebook definitely has those qualities in this Nick Cassavetes directed film. It is set in 1940s America and stars Ryan Gosling as Noah and Rachel McAdams as Allie. The movie succeeds in creating emotion from the beginning from the soft piano soundtrack and opening camera shots of sunsets and a single man paddling in a boat. As an audience we understand in the fist few moments of the film we will be taken on a journey.
The journey is about Noah and Allie and their passion for each other. They first met spontaneously and the risk taking of Noah draws Allie closer to him. As youths there is only one thing separating them, their class. Noah is a country boy where Allie is the city girl whose parents do not wish this summer relationship to blossom in the next season. It is quickly cut short as Allie moves to New York. But how do we know this? An older man reads a notebook to an elderly woman who suffers from senile dementia in a rest home.
The film is very sentimental and ties the conflict of mixed class, different social culture and ageless true love well.
Noah is unwilling to give up on Allie and is left in the background while she becomes suited to a man that her parents think highly about however is she as intimately involved with him than she could be with Noah.
The Notebook captures moments where we see couples be themselves whether it’s a fake smile or public persona, a truthful fight and argument or genuine laughter and love. The film creates a world for itself and one we choose to believe. No wonder why it was popular for the time and still holds up.
The film is based on Nicholas Sparks novel and when I asked the local library manager what she thought of the film she straight away said ” The book was different and better.” I do wonder what differences the original material has the film didn’t use.
There is a largeness to the story and we know that from the good use of wideshots, pans, and editing that keep us glued to the story.
This is a film that will age well in years to come.