Advertisement

Movie Mom

Movie Mom

Safe Haven

posted by Nell Minow
C
Lowest Recommended Age:Middle School
Profanity:Some strong language
Nudity/Sex:Sensual and suggestive sexual situation
Alcohol/Drugs:Drinking, character abuses alcohol
Violence/Scariness:Domestic abuse, fight, fire, adults and children in peril
Diversity Issues:None
Movie Release Date:February 14, 2013
DVD Release Date:May 12, 2013
C
Lowest Recommended Age: Middle School
Profanity: Some strong language
Nudity/Sex: Sensual and suggestive sexual situation
Alcohol/Drugs: Drinking, character abuses alcohol
Violence/Scariness: Domestic abuse, fight, fire, adults and children in peril
Diversity Issues: None
Movie Release Date: February 14, 2013
DVD Release Date: May 12, 2013

Now that best-selling author Nicholas Sparks has rung every possible variation out of his core formula: damaged hearts, pretty people, syrupy pop-song montages, buttery, sunlit cinematography, the healing powers of a body of water (and rain), the healing powers of a small town community, a sad death, and a letter of great import, he has officially run out of new ideas and even thoughts about how to keep re-arranging the old ideas.  An unnecessary twist at the end feels desperate and it feels like a cheat.

Advertisement

Damaged heart number one: Julianne Hough plays Katie, who is on the run from the Boston police for what looks like a violent assault.  She has cut and dyed her hair (so efficiently that it never grows out or needs to be retouched), stops in small town on the North Carolina Coast (body of water is the Atlantic Ocean), takes a job as a waitress in a local cafe and somehow has the money to move into a dilapidated but picturesque little cabin out in a remote area of the woods.

Damaged heart number two: Josh Duhamel, as usual far better than his script, plays Alex, the extremely handsome widower with two children (one adorable and affectionate, one mini-me damaged heart who misses his mom) who owns the local store.  At first, Katie just wants to keep to herself and resists making friends with Alex and with Jo (“How I Met Your Mother’s” Cobie Smulders), another single woman living alone in the woods.  But soon Katie and Alex are out on the healing water and then, when it rains, getting drenched by the powerful healing effects of even more water.  A not-very-surprising mystery about Katie’s past is revealed and pretty soon there will be a very significant letter.

Advertisement

Hough is not an actress of great range, but she looks very pretty and wears a bikini well.  Duhamel has a natural ease on screen that makes it easy to overlook what a committed and subtle performer he is.  Even when he is called upon to make Alex to have some improbable reactions, he manages to find a smidgen of honesty that elevates the material.  Director Lasse Hallstrom (“Chocolat,” “The Cider House Rules,” “My Life as a Dog”) puts so much gloss on the images that it feels like a perfume commercial but never elevates the story above the Lifetime movie level.

Advertisement

Parents should know that this movie includes themes of domestic abuse with some graphic and disturbing images, fire with child and adults in peril, references to sad death of parent, sexual situation, some strong language, and alcohol abuse

Family discussion: What does Katie learn from Jo that she cannot learn any other way?  What changed Alex’s mind?

If you like this, try: the book by Nicholas Sparks and some of his other movies like “The Notebook,” “The Lucky One,” and “Dear John”

Previous Posts

Interview: "Mike and Molly's" Billy Gardell on "Dancer and the Dame"
Billy Gardell, star of television's Mike & Molly, talked to me about his new film, Dancer & The Dame. He plays Rick Dancer. "He was once like a ...

posted 3:31:07pm May. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Trailer: The Search for Freedom
[iframe src="https://player.vimeo.com/video/121174641" width="500" height="281" frameborder="0"] This new documentary tells the stories of the athletes who seek the freedom that comes from living in the moment and doing what makes us feel the ...

posted 12:19:02pm May. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Win a Daniel Tiger Book and DVD!
Daniel Tiger loves being outside and spending time with his family and friends. In these eight stories, he learns about swimming ...

posted 8:00:48am May. 26, 2015 | read full post »

Behind the Scenes: Jurassic World
[iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/EEmOyR33-Uk" frameborder="0"] Here's a great sneak peek inside "Jurassic World," coming to theaters on June 12, 2015. ...

posted 4:10:08pm May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Tribute: Anne Meara
Today we mourn the loss of actress/comedian Anne Meara, wife of Jerry Stiller and mother of actor/director Ben Stiller. Stiller and Meara were a comedy team who appeared frequently on the Ed Sullivan show. Their humor often focused on their ...

posted 1:25:55pm May. 25, 2015 | read full post »

Advertisement


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.