Just because a movie is soppy it doesn’t mean it’s stupid. Or that you should pre-judge something merely on account of its vomitworthy title.
Endless Love is a chick-flick aimed fair and square at a teenage audience. Once you’re over that hurdle, its rewards are better than minimal.
Seventeen-year-old Jade (Gabriella Wilde) has everything – a blonde beauty with legs as long as a giraffe’s; her father (Bruce Greenwood) is loaded and she is about to follow in his footsteps by studying medicine at an Ivy League college.
David (Alex Pettyfer) is from the wrong side of the tracks. He has just graduated from high school with Jade, but has no ambition other than to continue to work with his divorced dad in his mechanic’s shop.
Naturally, Jade’s old man does not approve, but there is a little bit more to it than that. Both of Jade’s parents are still struggling to cope with the death of Jade’s stellar older brother.
Events amble along at an unhurried, drearily orthodox rate until things start to happen when the family, with David turning up as Jade’s unwelcome guest, all choof off to their fab summer lakehouse.
Pettyfer is a log that talks, but he is a nice-looking young man, in a knuckle-dragging, poor-me kind of way, while Wilde, though no great shakes at the acting caper herself, is as cute as needs be, and as a star-struck couple they easily convince. Greenwood’s role is critical in developing and maintaining the drama – the central character Arc is his.
It is pleasing, too, that the kids are not painted as complete goody-two-shoes – they have sex and smoke dope one night (albeit implicitly rather than explicitly).
I can’t remember the last time I saw a movie quite so corny as this, so unambiguously Mills and Boon in ambition and delivery, which makes it even harder to admit that I enjoyed it heaps.
It’s a straightforward story well told, with engaging characters and a happy ending.
Sometimes that’s enough.
~ John Campbell