Okay, so I’m deciding right this moment to come out of the blogging cave in which I have been hiding. What better way to spend the holidays (read: long weekend) than to catch up with your writing, right?
Hence, another movie review. The subject: Amanda Seyfried.
Sorry, I meant: Letters to Juliet.
I was in the office when I saw the movie with Amanda as the lead character. But it was from one of my college friends that I first heard about the film, er, around a year ago? So what made me want to see it after such long time?
For one, it’s a story about love. I loved the freshness with which the story is promoted. And fine, it did help that the setting was in Verona, Italy. Ha!
Letters to Juliet was a film about searching for true love. Sophie, a happily engaged career woman, went on a pre-honeymoon trip with her fiance Victor to Verona, Italy. Her bubble of excitement was unfortunately burst when the Italian cuisine seemed to appeal more to the aspiring chef and restaurateur that was Victor. While Sophie, on the other hand, simply wanted to enjoy the ultimately romantic getaway.
When Victor went overboard by going to several research-based trips, leaving Sophie alone most of the time. That was when she found the loving world of the so-called “secretaries” of the famous Juliet Capulet. A lot of tourists, especially women, from all over the world come to Verona to write letters to their loved ones. Then, the secretaries themselves reply.
It was in this way that Sophie discovered a long hidden letter written by a certain Claire to a man named Lorenzo. The letter was five decades old. Moved so much by the letter, which was about a woman who had left the man she loved, Sophie sought permission to reply.
As only chance could have it, the letter sender was still alive. Sophie was visited by Claire, who had come all the way from London together with her grandson Charlie. The visitors were like opposite poles: Claire strongly believed in Sophie’s idea of finding her Lorenzo again while Charlie so adamantly maintained that it would be a waste of time.
But the loving heart of Claire prevailed and so they set to a search party, creating a list of all the Lorenzo’s around the area and visiting each one.
In the course of the search, something sparks between the bickering Sophie and Charlie. It had become a roller coaster of some sort. Things happened and then suddenly, they had to part. But of course, as in any love story, the two found a way back to each other.
The film ended with the romantic denouement that was somehow predictable but still overly endearing.
Amanda Seyfried as Sophie
The ever-sweet blonde Amanda did not at all disappoint in this romantic film. Her expressive eyes were a total plus. The girl could cry and hope and sigh and manage to get everybody believe in the warm feeling that only love could give. I think it also didn’t hurt that she was utterly beautiful, with a rare positive glow, which all the more complements with the sunny Verona.
Chris Egan as Charlie
A superbly effective English man with a delightfully charming accent, Chris made it difficult to actually dislike the pompous boy that his character Charlie was. He was lovable, with so much of the boy-who-grew-up-with-granny aura that his actions were actually quite pleasant to see. Best of all, he had this clarity that was bordering on honesty that gave out so much feelings you could hardly take away what made him smile.
Vanessa Redgrave as Claire
Vanessa Redgrave with Franco Nero (Lorenzo)
For a woman who’s supposedly 50 years or more, Vanessa is a surprisingly radiant. She had no inkling of being too aged. Maybe it was because she had too much love in her, that it radiated from within her. There’s a lot of positive aura around Vanessa that you cannot help but to actually wish she finds her Lorenzo.
Gael Garcia Bernal as Victor
Gael Garcia Bernal
Well, he’s a good man with strong hopes and dreams. Gael is a perfect Victor, with his heavy accent and sturdy shaped jaws. I liked his eyes and the way he looked so smart and passionate.
What I Liked About It
Let’s do a list in this part . . .
1. The setting. It’s Verona, man. What else could we ask for? The place is sunny, with a touch of vintage, with lots of greens and woods. It’s the perfect setting for a love story.
2. The soundtrack. Italian songs and Colbie Caillat. Now, that’s great music. The film is laden with cool and breezy notes that all scenes are practically like in a musical.
3. The overall aesthetics of the film. I actually couldn’t put my fingers into whatever it was that made me say aesthetics. It’s just that when I was watching the movie, it felt like a freshly baked pie–sweet smelling and delectable looking.
What I Didn’t Like About It
Well . . . let’s just say I thought the movie was all too easy. I could’t quite pinpoint how difficult I wanted the story to be like. But I guess there were just too little conflict. In fact, it was so little a conflict that I could easily tell how the end would be. But okay, maybe we could be a bit lenient since it was, after all, a rom com with an utterly familiar plot.
On the whole, Letters to Juliet is one of those films that you can watch for its goodness and never get tired of the story. It feels nice to have something like that, which is handy enough for a pleasant afternoon lounging with friends–or better yet, with a special someone.
In parting, I’d like to share with you Juliet’s (Sophie’s) letter in reply to Claire’s–in the hope that you take it by the heart and feel the love radiate strongly:
“What” and “if” are two words as none threatening as words can be, but put them together side by side and they have the power to haunt you for the rest of your life. What if? What if? What if? I don’t know how your story ended, but if wouldn’t you felt then was true love, then it’s never too late. If it was true then, why wouldn’t it be true now? You need only the courage to follow your heart. I don’t know what a love like Juliet’s feels like –love to leave loved ones for –love to cross oceans for… But I’d like to believe if I ever were to feel it, that’ I’d have the courage to seize it. And Claire, if you didn’t, I hope one day that you will.
All my love,