‘Safe Haven’ proves itself to be another Nicholas Sparks classic
It’s no secret that I enjoy romantic comedies or, as they’re more commonly known, “rom-coms.” Since Nicholas Sparks is one of my favorite authors, I knew I had to see his latest novel to hit theaters, “Safe Haven,” released Feb. 14.
Starring “Footloose” actress Julianne Hough and “Transformers” actor Josh Duhamel, I knew from the trailers alone that this was destined to be another classic Sparks adaptation, up there with “The Notebook,” “The Last Song,” “The Lucky One” and “A Walk to Remember.” The novel follows mysterious Katie (Hough) as she ends up in a small North Carolina town, where her secretive past stirs up rumors throughout the small town. As she forms a relationship with widowed Alex (Duhamel), Katie comes to realize that true love is the only ‘safe haven.’
Before even entering the theater, I stuffed a wad of Kleenex tissues in my pocket, mentally preparing myself for the inevitable tear-jerking scenes that would no doubt take place. Expecting another classic Sparks mushy love story, I anxiously waited in the theater for the lights to dim. I replayed the trailer in my mind, excited to see the scenes from the trailer on the big screen: Katie’s tearful moments, Alex’s sorrowful looks, the moment Alex proclaims his love in true Sparks fashion, the dramatic scenes ahead and each actor careful portrayal of their character.
Based on their past performances, I was excited to see the lead actors bring this novel to life. Duhamel is a classic romantic comedy actors, so no doubt he would deliver. Hough, who made her entertainment debut as a professional dancer on the reality show “Dancing With The Stars,” has recently risen to the same rom-com fame, and no doubt this will not be her last film, as the trailers show off her intense emotion and raw talent.
Just as I predicted, Hough and Duhamel dazzled as the next Noah and Allie in the hit-bound adaptation, “Safe Haven.” As soon as the film began, I was wrapped up in the tragic action sequence that dominated the opening of the film. As I watched Hough thrive in her first lead role, I was captivated by the Sparks novel brought to life. This is definitely a must-see: there’s action, romance, heartfelt relationships and two adorable children (Noah Lomax and Mimi Kirkland as Josh and Lexie, respectively) cast as Duhamel’s onscreen offspring. The typical Sparks’ Carolinas setting was the perfect, serene backdrop for the love story. The plot was well-written, directed and acted throughout, providing what is destined to be the next blockbuster Sparks adaptation.
Other than Hough’s awkward brunette wig and the horror of the the film’s villain searching for Katie, the film was superbly done in a perfect rom-com movie fashion that I thoroughly enjoyed. And hopefully you will too. #