Rashid Irani's review: The Vow
Direction: Michael Sucsy
Cast: Rachel McAdams, Channing Tatum
A Chicago-based sculptress (McAdams) slips into a coma following a car crash. When she wakes up, she has no recollection of the recent past, including her marriage to the owner (Tatum) of a recording studio. In other words, if you have tears, prepare to shed them for her hapless husband. He hopes to rekindle memories of their halcyon days together, failing which he’s determined, believe it or baulk, to “make her fall in love with me again”.
There was plenty of potential to develop the amnesia-affected premise. Alas, The Vow strikes us as more banal than believable, despite being inspired by true events. The viewer is never moved from mild interest to emotional involvement in the glossy romantic melodrama.
It’s apparent that the bohemian couple was giddily in love before the accident. But now she treats her husband like a stranger. Worse, the confused young woman feels the pangs of being pulled back into her privileged pre-trauma life when she was a law student living with her wealthy parents (Sam Neill-Jessica Lange).
To add to her conundrum there are encounters with a feckless former fiancé (Scott Speedman). The direction by TV veteran Sucsy is strictly serviceable.
On a more positive note, the climatic tête-à-tête between the couple-in-distress is correctly understated. Also, the Chicago locations are enticingly photographed.
Rachel McAdams and Channing Tatum are earnest enough but don’t click as a romantic duo. Oscar winning old-timer Jessica Lange is proficient in the brief role of the long-suffering mother-in-law.
Unlike the protagonist, viewers won’t need to jog their memory for ultimately, The Vow is best forgotten.