P.S. I LOVE YOU
Cast : Hillary Swank, Gerard Butler
Direction : Richard LaGravenese
Rating : **
She’s a 30-something New Yorker with a fetish for shoes. And he’s her hunky Irish husband who suddenly drops dead of a brain tumor. But wait, there’s a twist in the plot. Believe it or bawl, there’s romance beyond the grave for the tempestuous couple (Swank-Butler). Ghost, anyone?
Here, instead of the lover’s visitations in the popular 1990 Demi Moore flick, the widow receives a series of letters written by her husband before he died. The epistles, It seems, are meant to help her through the grieving process.
She must be truly blessed. She is also flanked by a sympathetic mom (Kathy Bates) and a pair of cheerful, rah-rah friends (Lisa Kudrow-Gina Gershon). In fact, the irreverent banter between the pals injects some sorely needed humour into the predictable proceedings.
Snag: There are far too many dull flashbacks to the good old days . It’s also a given that the widow will take her late husband’s entreaties to heart and get involved with a new guy after that mandatory period of adjustment.
She doesn’t only hit the karaoke again --- her last singing performance had landed her in hospital --- but also ventures to Ireland to meet her husband’s family. Lush production values and touristy photography, however, can’t save the film from sinking into banality.
Any redeeming points? The star presence of multiple-Oscar winner Hilary Swank who delivers another impressive performance. Alas, Scottish star Gerard Butler --- last seen in the blockbuster 300 ---- barely makes an impact.
Adapted from the best-selling novel by Cecilia Ahern, the unabashed melodrama is as mawkish as they come. In effect, P.S. I Love You is a variation on a mushy episode from a soap serial. Advice:take a handkerchief or two along if you must.