Dear John

John Tyree (Channing Tatum) is a Special Forces soldier who meets Savannah Curtis (Amanda Seyfried) while home on leave. They have two weeks together before he has to go back overseas, and in that fortnight they fall head over heels for each other.

They decide to write to each other for the year John is away and Savannah is in college. They number the letters because getting letters out from the places John is assigned isn’t always a sure thing, and Savannah’s letters have to find him in these remote places. (On a side note, if you ever wanted to appreciate the postal service, this would be the movie to watch.)

9-11 happens during the year he’s gone, and John along with the rest of his unit reenlists. John and Savannah continue writing, but during the time he’s gone, Savannah writes him the classic “Dear John” letter. She’s engaged, and he burns the letters he’s been keeping until he could find a mailbox.

John decides to make the military a career–he wants to give up on Savannah altogether, although it’s apparent he still loves her. His father has a stroke, and he goes back home. He sees Savannah after his father passes away and discovers she has married Tim, a friend of theirs who is has fourth stage lymphoma, in order to care for him and his autistic son. She still loves John, but is deeply sad and strapped for money because of treatment costs, and it looks like their love affair is over.

John decides to sell his father’s valuables and donates the money anonymously for Tim’s treatment. Five years pass and Savannah writes John and tells him that the anonymous donation bought Tim two months to come home, be with his son, and say good-bye to those he loved.

John comes home and he and Savannah are finally together.

The movie is based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks. In the novel, of course, they don’t end up together. Sparks’ novels are always like that–hopelessly sad love affairs that end with longing or heartbreak.

All in all, not my kind of movie. I wasn’t believing the part where she’d marry Tim in a massive moment of self-sacrifice for one thing, and I really wasn’t buying that John would sell off his father’s invaluable coin collection to help the guy who’d taken his girl. In the movie, he did it to help Savannah, not Tim, but I still wasn’t buying it.

And the Tim character–what kind of guy marries a woman he knows loves someone else? Supposedly he did it to have his autistic son taken care of, but it’s not like she couldn’t have taken care of him without the marriage. Tim was the least likeable character in the whole scenario when I really got to thinking about it. He knew how much she loved John and John loved her, yet he took her away from him for his own selfish reasons. Nice.

Not my kind of movie.

 

 

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