If I had to choose my top novels of Nicholas Sparks that I enjoyed, I’d have to say that Dear John is one of them. The story is really good and there’s so much awesomeness in just love, war, family, long distance relationship and all that stuff. It was nothing like a tearjerker like A Walk to Remember but it was one that I really enjoyed. That novel came to my attention because it was adapted into a movie and I read it and then waited to watch the movie. This is my second viewing of it.
Director: Lasse Hallstrom
Cast: Channing Tatum, Amanda Seyfried, Richard Jenkins, Henry Thomas
John (Channing Tatum) is home on leave from the military and after one of his surfs and walking on the pier, he notices a girl that accidentally drops her purse into the water. Without hesitation, he jumps in to retrieve it for her. This girl, Savannah (Amanda Seyfriend), is there for the summer with her parents. Savannah turns out to be a conservative good girl who seems to have no flaws and they start dating. When his leave ends, it is also time for Savannah to go back to school but they decide to keep their relationship for the following year as John will be home for good then. They decide to keep in contact through mail to sustain their relationship. When a year comes up and John decides to re-sign for longer due to the 9/11 attacks back home, can their love endure it?
Back when this movie first came out, the only reason I wanted to see it was because I like Amanda Seyfried. I still do, not so much of a girl crush anymore than before but why not Channing Tatum? Well, he was always pegged for roles like this. Not a lot of emotions and reserved in his feelings and always some form of military or whatnot. I think watching this changed my mind a little because at least it was better than GI Joe and I didn’t fall asleep. Plus, I already told you that I loved the story. That was my thing back then, liking the intensity of long distance relationship. As I write this, I really am thinking of rereading this one. I forgot how awesome it was and the ending is just so…bittersweet in a way. The choices, the timing, the waiting and the giving up…but then there’s so much more because the girl in Nicholas Sparks novels always helps enlighten the guy in some way and with this one is one bringing back the life to John’s relationship with his dad.
That scene up there is my favorite part of the novel that they somewhat toned down a little for the movie. Still, I love it quite a bit. Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried has some pretty good chemistry and there are some pretty sweet moments. Of course it uses the same formula as always but the story is one I like and honestly, I felt like Channing Tatum fell perfectly into this role and he gave this movie life. It may not be his character John’s relationship with Savannah that made this movie memorable but rather, I was truly moved by his relationship with his father, portrayed by Richard Jenkins. The father and son story here shines through so much. After so many of these, I’m starting to think that maybe Nicholas Sparks should change his romance career and just go for family drama. Could work, no? 😉 Back on track, Richard Jenkins is amazing. I haven’t seen him do a lot of main leads but he is a kickass supporting role all the time and he just always acts out everything so well.
Dear John has its flaws and it follows the same little bits of Nicholas Sparks novels but its all in whether you buy the premise. For me, my love for the novel actually made me like this a bit more than the majority of people. Plus, this was the role that made me feel like Channing Tatum was doing great for the first time,but that was until I saw Magic Mike which broke him out of his same roles and he started having a variety of them. Its a bittersweet ending and I love reading about being put in situations to make choices because thats what life is about, right? You make choices and you have to take on the challenges and consequences that come with them. I’ll end it here before I get all philosophical. If you don’t see the movie, read the book. I’ll work on rereading that this year 🙂 Still, I don’t really think it was all that bad, just depends if you like this sort of premise.
These reviews are turning more into write-ups about a ramble of thoughts combined together…don’t you think?
Have you seen Dear John? What are your thoughts on Channing Tatum and/or Amanda Seyfried?
By the way, I’m really trying to finish up Nicholas Sparks by Valentine’s Day so I’ve been on overtime watching these, hopefully with maybe one day of double reviews, I’ll manage to sneak them all in 🙂