Two-time Oscar winner Hillary Swank tries her hand at romantic comedy in this touching film based on the bestselling Irish novel. Holly Kennedy (Swank) and her charming Irish husband Gerry (Gerard Butler) are a young couple struggling to get by in New York City. Their marriage is 10 years strong, and they are madly in love, but the fates soon step in, when Gerry develops cancer and dies. Holly is completely devastated, and her friends Denise (Lisa Kudrow) and Sharon (Gina Gershon) do their best to console her. Her mother (Kathy Bates) and sister, Rose (Nellie Mckay), also offer their support, but it seems nothing can pull Holly out of her grief. Then one day, she begins to receive love letters Gerry penned before his death. The letters are filled with various stories and instructions, and one of them even contains a plan that sends her and her friends on a trip to Ireland. As Gerry’s posthumous letters buoy her up, Holly slowly begins to piece her life back together. His letters help her to celebrate their special love story, and remind her that she must continue to live her life, and seek out happiness. The film’s stellar cast delivers many tearjerker moments, and “P.S. I Love You” does a fine job of yanking on the heartstrings. However, the tone often shifts so abruptly, it at times feels as though they couldn’t quite decide if Holly was a steel magnolia, a Bridget with a diary, or a devil in search of some Prada. But the strong performances manage to hold the tale together, and the story is ultimately moving, and yes, romantic.
Hilary Swank is the type of actress that creates a level of expectation whenever she is in a movie. There are times where she has made mistakes, “The Reaping” and “The Core” however it seems she often picks really good movies. “P.S. I Love You” ends up somewhere right in the middle. It’s not bad but its not great. The story is interesting and keeps the movie moving along as you wait for what will come next. There are occasions when the movie feels slow and other moments where it feels just right.
This is an emotional movie that caught a guy like me on a rainy day. You know, the kind where you’ll cry at the drop of a pin? Well I wouldn’t admit to crying any way, but this is a tearjerker. The cast is quite good lead by Swank and Gerard Butler and the supporting cast of Kathy Bates and Lisa Kudrow. Swank certainly shines above all the rest. Because she appears so human you can’t help but love her character. Swank makes it look effortless and you believe every emotion.
“P.S. I Love You” won’t win any awards and its hard to say what makes for a good romantic comedy. A good comedy makes you laugh and a good chick flick might make you laugh or fall in love with the characters. “P.S. I Love You” has some of those ingredients–it just never quite gets them all in perfect harmony. That said–it’s still worth renting on a rainy day.
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