Love stories are not always something that have been my cup of tea, when it comes to the world of feature films. Every now and then I’ve come across the chick flick that appeals to me like City of Angels, You’ve Got Mail, or even 50 First Dates, which I’m still on the fence of pigeonholing it as a chick flick or romantic comedy, but you get the idea. When it comes to nothing but solid love story, though, my interest begins to fade. I just can’t get into those plots, because it isn’t what I care to pay attention to for two hours. Give me the occasional comedy or an affair or some drama or angels trying to become humans again to be with the one they love…that would at least give me a little variety. Don’t give me strangers meeting, getting to know one another, and falling in love. That does not make for a good film.
Adrienne Willis (Diane Lane) is having trouble adjusting to life after finding out about her husband’s affair months ago. Now not only must she figure out how to survive without him but also take care of her teenage daughter and young son without their father around for guidance. Some time away is just what she needs to collect her thoughts. Thanks to a friend of hers, she is watching over a beach front bed and breakfast. The kids are with the ex, and all Adrienne has to do besides enjoy some r-and-r is to take care of one guest. Little did she know that the guest would change her life forever.
Upon arriving at the beach house, Adrienne meets Dr. Paul Flanner (Richard Gere), the lone guest. Paul is a quiet man that pretty much wants to be left alone, which is good for Adrienne. Come dinner time, Paul doesn’t want to eat alone. They get to talking and one thing leads to another. Love develops. But they realize and reflect about the hardships involved in prolonging the love affair. It’s not going be so easy, but their love seems way too strong already to just give up on one another. Paul and Adrienne must now fight for their love and soon for their lives.
Believe me that the right crowd will love Nights in Rodanthe and find it to be a fantastic film with a great love story that is touching to the heart and soul, but it’s just not for me. I’m going to give it the credit it deserves that it is well made and has a pretty decent script, but it’s not like this is the type of story I haven’t seen done many times over, and better. Richard Gere and Diane Lane have awesome chemistry onscreen and that was first proven with Unfaithful, which, despite the subject matter, is much more enjoyable. Rodanthe is a sappy love story and nothing more. Which translates to: chicks will love this.
The film is shown in 2.40:1 Anamorphic Widescreen format in 1080p HD and the film really looks very good. A lot of beautiful and luscious landscapes are shown in Nights meaning that the better the quality of the picture, the better each scene will be pulled off. Well done job here.
All the sentiment and love is heard in Dolby Digital 5.1 Surround Sound and maybe it’s because ninety percent of the film is dialogue driven, but the audio left a lot to be desired. That rings especially true considering this is Blu-ray and it does an adequate job but fails to impress.
The Nature Of Love – Here we get our pretty basic “making of” featurette that is more so the cast and director speaking on what they were trying to accomplish with the film. Clips from the film and from on the set of the shoot are interspersed between their comments making for something that isn’t overly informative but not bad to check out. (21:23)
Lost In The Hurricane – These would be some deleted scenes that don’t really matter much. Director George C. Wolf provides commentary for the scenes but in an odd twist I’ve never actually seen before, you can’t stop him. I mean the commentary is not optional but you just have to listen to him talk if you want to watch the deleted scenes. That’s rather annoying.
In Rodanthe – Singer/songwriter Emmylou Harris takes viewers what she went through in order to come up with the score and songs for the film. It’s a rather interesting look at how she took the material she’d be writing for and worked at making the emotions and feelings come through in her music. (12:15)
A Time For Love – Author Nicholas Sparks is profiled here about his novels and especially Nights In Rodanthe. Sparks is fun to listen to as he takes pride and joy in his work making it much easier to take in everything he has to say. (11:26)
“Love Remains The Same” Music Video From Gavin Rossdale
I suppose that since I’m not the demographic that Nicholas Sparks was aiming for when he wrote this or any of his books, the romance was lost on me. Nights In Rodanthe plays like a cheesy romance novel, and in some regard that’s what it is. The special features provide little; an audio commentary from Sparks and/or director Wolfe would have been beneficial. It’s no matter. Women will watch Diane Lane and Richard Gere all lovey-dovey any day of the week.
Warner Home Video presents Nights In Rodanthe. Directed by: George C. Wolfe. Starring: Richard Gere, Diane Lane, Scott Glenn, Christopher Meloni, Viola Davis. Written by: Nicholas Sparks, Ann Peacock, & John Romano. Running time: 97 minutes. Rating: PG-13. Released on DVD: February 10, 2009. Available at Amazon.com