Reminiscent of The Notebook, One Day, based on the best-selling novel of the same name, and adapted for the screen by the same writer, David Nicholls, tugs at our heart-strings and meditates on issues of pride, love, life, loss and friendship. On the surface it appears like the conventional “chick flick”, but behind the usual boy-meet-girl narrative lies thought-provoking and painful themes guaranteed to trigger forgotten memories. One day is essentially about missed opportunities and failing to embrace opportunities. If you are looking for escapism, you won’t find it here. This is real life!?
PLOT: After spending the night together on the night of their college graduation Dexter and Em are shown each year on the same date to see where they are in their lives. They are sometimes together, sometimes not, on that day.
DIRECTOR: Lone Scherfig
CAST: Anne Hathaway, Jim Sturgess and Patricia Clarkson
GENRE: Romantic Drama
AGE RESTRICTION: PG 13 (Violence, Language, Mild Sex, Mild Nudity)
One Day is intriguingly structured. The title is meant to be taken literally. Using a semi-linear arrangement we jump between Emma and Dex’s lives, on the same day every year, from July 15th 1988, the day they first met, to the present day. Each year sees the couple become closer friends, and shows their struggles through life. It’s plain to see that the two belong together, but through repeated bad choices and mistakes they never pursue a romance. The whole “guys and girls can’t be friends” argument could be raised here.
It’s a film that succeeds in drawing the audience into the awkward friendship between the two main characters, well-acted by Jim Sturgess and Anne Hathaway. What I found most surprising about the experience was that I actually cared about the characters. I became enamoured with their story, always hoping for the best.
Hathaway really shines here. She is charming, interesting and often steals the limelight from her co-stars. For the most part Jim Sturgess holds up his part, but I can’t help but feel that there was a more fitting actor to take on the role. Sadly he doesn’t match Hathaway’s passionate performance.
Very seldom are emotionally involving movies like One Day produced. I am a tough-as-nails-kinda-guy. I laugh during horrors, I roll my eyes during soppy love stories and I mock romantic comedies, but my popcorn tasted just that more bitter come the finale. I’m certain that someone added really (really!) strong onions to the bottom of my bowl!
You are hereby advised to ignore all the bad reviews by critics and check out this fairly impressive romantic tale.
Whatever happens tomorrow, we had today. – Emma