Review by David Stratton
Paige and Leo Collins, RACHEL MCADAMS and CHANNING TATUM, are a young married couple living in Chicago; she is an artist, he has a recording studio. one snowy night, after going to the cinema, Leo is driving them home when there’s an accident; as a result, Paige suffers memory loss – she can remember her life up to a certain point, when she lived at home with her parents, Sam Neill and Jessica Lange, studied law, and was engaged to Jeremy, Scott Speedman; but she can’t remember Leo or their life together at all.THE VOW is inspired by a real story, and a photograph of the real Paige and Leo appears at the end of the movie. given that, you wish that the film could have been more inspiring. A story like this one should be deeply moving, but it remains superficial and at times unconvincing. some of the characters, like that of Paige’s father, border on caricature, and I’m afraid I find Channing Tatum a rather wooden performer. But Rachel McAdams is lovely – and you just wish that Paige’s plight had been given more in-depth treatment than director Michael Sucsy achieves.
DAVID: Margaret?MARGARET: do I think this is about two beautiful young people on screen and whether you can believe in the love affair that happens between them and…DAVID: well, I wanted to. MARGARET: I did. I’m a sucker, and you don’t like Channing Tatum.DAVID: No.MARGARET: and I think that there is something there that interests me. I think he’s got a very nice presence on screen. Maybe not too bright but nice. DAVID: You’re so generous.MARGARET: and she is lovely. I think there is a problem. I think it should have been a fantasy really. I didn’t like the photo at the end of the real people. I couldn’t see what that had to do with anything.DAVID: well, but it just reminds you that it’s a true story and these are what the real people actually look like.MARGARET: yes, well, I think I’d rather it remained a fantasy but at the same time I don’t think it’s a great film but she is magical on screen in just about everything she does. DAVID: She is. She’s lovely, yes.MARGARET: I think they make a mistake in making her character a little bit too unlikeable in the aftermath of the accident.DAVID: Mm.MARGARET: But, look, I had a fairly good, bland, romantic time. DAVID: Did you weep?MARGARET: No, I didn’t weep.DAVID: No, and I didn’t weep and I weep in…MARGARET: you like weeping, don’t you?DAVID: I do… sad films but I didn’t shed a tear in this one.MARGARET: what are you giving it?DAVID: two and a half.MARGARET: No, I’m giving it three. I’m so generous.