The Last Letter From Your Lover (2021) Review

A conventional and escapist romantic film

Aparnna Hajirnis -

The Last Letter From Your Lover (2021) Review
Platform
Netflix
Platform Icons Click To Stream
Format
Original Movie Review
Movie Rated
16+
Genre
DRAMA,ROMANCE
Language
English

What is the story about?

A film adaptation of Jojo Moyes' eponymous novel, The Last Letter From Your Lover toggles between two love stories set in different time periods. Ellie Haworth is  an ambitious journalist who stumbles upon a stack of secret love letters from 1965 and becomes determined to solve the mystery of the star-crossed lovers. She starts uncovering the forbidden romance between Jennifer Stirling  the wife of a wealthy industrialist, and Anthony O'Hare the financial journalist writing a piece on her husband. Soon Ellie finds herself intertwined in a romance of herself with her colleague and archivist, Rory. 

Analysis

The story of The Last Letter From Your Lover toggles between love stories set in different eras: the first is that of Jennifer, the unhappy and amnesiac wife of a rich industrialist who falls for Anthony O'Hare, a journalist covering her husband's life in 1965. The second is that of Ellie and Rory, which is set in the current time. The movie has been shot across the beautiful French Riviera but that is honestly all that there is to it. Like most of the romantic films, this is visually stunning film with beautiful actors. The movie tries to show the parallels between two love stories set in different eras, which was formuliac and using the cookie-cutter formula. Both the stories start with a bit of antagonism in the beginning and somehow you predict what is coming. The story falters in several places and the actors don't seem to have much of chemistry either. This film joins the plethora of films about people discovering the power of love via romantic letters such as Message In A Bottle, Letters To Juliet, The Notebook...to name a few. 

Performances

Felicity Jones plays Ellie Haworth, a cross between Bridget Jones and Carrie Bradshaw, a woman who doesn't believe in love but wants to find more about a love story set in 1965. Shailene Woodley plays a socialite from 1960s, who after suffering from amnesia due to an accident falls herself falling for a journalist even though she is married. Callum Turner plays Anthony O'Hare, a journalist, and Nabhaan Rizwan plays an archivist. While the starcast might seem to be making an effort, the two couples really don't have much chemistry between them. Their romances seem to be like a soda without fizz. 

Music & Other Departments

Period movies most of the times get their costumes and music right. This movie too, has some lovely tracks playing in the backdrop when set in the 1965 era. The 1965 time period features, Aretha Franklin’s 'Do Right Woman, Do Right Man' Nancy Sinatra and Lee Hazlewood’s 'Summer Wine', as well as Doris Troy’s 'Whatcha Gonna Do About It'. Apart from that the costumes and styling is quite on fleek. However, the production quality is just not upto the mark of a Netflix film. It looks like a cross between the early-2000 television movies and Hallmark movies. The dialogues too are just too corny for a 2021 audience. The screenplay too just doesn't seem to have to offer much to its male leads. 

Highlights

  • Stunning clothes and makeup
  • Light-hearted movie

Drawbacks

  • Predictable
  • Conventional
  • Run-of-the-mill romantic story

Did I enjoy it?

No. The makers know their audiences well and it caters to only those audiences who love sappy romances. It doesn't work for people who seek depth or romance in unconventional settings. 

Do I recommend it?

If you like romance dramas or romantic comedies which are light-hearted and easy on your eyes, this is a movie for you. 


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