In an era where remaking forgettable films from the ’80s into forgettable films for a new generation is commonplace Endless Love came and went into theatres with little fanfare and left with a decent haul for an underperforming wide release. Lost in the jet stream of About Last Night and Robocop, two other ‘80s remakes opening on the same weekend, Endless Love managed to find a decent box office domestically for a film that didn’t seem like it needed an update.
Based off the ‘80s film of the same name and remade from the novel of the same name by Scott Spencer, it follows the original with a tale of a couple of star-crossed teenagers who are in love. David (Alex Pettyfer) is a poor boy from a poor family who graduates high school with Jade (Gabrielle Wilde), a rich girl with not many friends. Her parents (Bruce Greenwood, Joely Richardson) have plans for her to become a doctor while David’s father (Robert Patrick) has him working in the same garage as he does. Her parents don’t like him, of course, and thus their relationship seems doomed from the start.
It just doesn’t feel necessary, the film, because it adds nothing new or interesting to the original story. It’s not that the original was all that good or memorable to begin with; it was fairly mediocre and hasn’t aged all that well in the near 30 years since it was a relevant film in theatres. Remaking Endless Love would seem like a good idea but doing what essentially amounts to a shot for shot remake doesn’t do anything but show that you can remake a mediocre film with another mediocre film and not miss a beat.
It’s the one thing both Robocop and About Last Night both did and, since both were basically contemporaries of Endless Love (2014), the fact that they tried to do something different with the same source material makes Shana Faste’s version seem all that much more dull. Nothing has been changed about Endless Love except it’s been updated with different actors and set in the modern era. There’s nothing about the film, setting aside, that sets it apart from its remake and that’s a problem. It’s one thing to be boring but it’s another to duplicate boring and not at least mix it up.
There’s nothing new or interesting about the film and it doesn’t do anything in particular, nor does it cast, to distinguish themselves. No one’s blatantly mailing it in but there’s nothing being done that makes you stand up and notice. This is perfectly acceptable acting for a borderline perfectly acceptable film, nothing more, and it’s a problem because it makes the film instantly forgettable and passable. If you wanted to see Endless Love and had a choice between two there’s no real reason to grab the remake.
Both do exactly the same thing, with a cast that’s functional but not brilliant. If you have a choice, pick the ‘80s film and at least revel in some nostalgia.
An EPK making of piece, as well as the usual deleted/extended scenes and an extended ending, are included.
Universal presents Endless Love. Directed by Shana Faste. Written by Faste and Joshua Safran based on “Endless Love” by Scott Spencer. Starring Alex Pettyfer, Gabrielle Wilde, Bruce Greenwood, Joely Richardson, Robert Patrick. Running time: 104 minutes. Rated PG-13. Released: May 27, 2014.
Tags: Alex Pettyfer, Bruce Greenwood, Joely Richardson