All Glory Is Fleeting
Zac Efron contributes his pretty boy looks and buffed frame to be part of the Nicholas Sparks fraternity of actors who have taken on a leading role from the writer'series of romantic novels, being turned to films with aplomb by producer Denise Di Novi. Like how Dear John involved Channing Tatum being sent off to the Middle East frontlines that disrupted his budding relationship in Dear John, Efron's character returns to the USA after multiple tours, the last one being his luckiest having to survive many deadly situations, thanks to a random photograph of a girl he picked up.
Directed by Scott Hicks, The Lucky One is that same formula that any romantic film fan will have come to accept, given the subscription to themes like fate and destiny, since it didn't take Efron's Logan too long to google and track down Beth (Taylor Shilling), the female posing in the picture her found, and from there, both lonely souls got attracted to each other, with the usual obstacles placed in their way in which they have to overcome before being able to enjoy their happily ever after. This comes in the form of an ex-husband still dead set on winning his ex-wife back although clueless in going about doing so, and a kid whom Logan charms as a necessity since he's likely to be family.
With all the ingredients all ready to cook up a successful storm, somehow Hicks managed to really simmer the broth too much, that it sucked up all heart and soul of the film, turning it into something generic, bland, and wasted a lot of time with the mundane, and the uninteresting stuff that padded the middle of the film, sagging its pace and making scenes felt they've lasted way past their welcome. Efron wears a blank expression throughout most of his scenes, with fans here just expecting him to rip his shirt off so that they can squeal in delight. I felt Taylor Schilling is a bit miscast starring opposite him, sharing little chemistry as a credible couple, perhaps to show how even the unlikeliest amongst us, with the intervention of Fate's invisible hand, may have a say with whom we hook up with.
Expect the usual syrupy romantic moments that Nicholas Sparks is famous for, in a tale where everyone has redeeming qualities.
You can read my review of The Lucky One at movieXclusive.com by clicking on the logo below.