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The Vow

A sweet love story with its heart in the right place but a somewhat misleading title.
The Vow
Our Rating
2 Stars - Fair
Average Rating
 
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Mpaa Rating
PG-13 (for an accident scene, sexual content, partial nudity and some language)
Genre
Directed By
Michael Sucsy
Run Time
1 hour 44 minutes
Cast
Rachel McAdams, Channing Tatum, Jessica Lange, Sam Neill
Theatre Release
February 10, 2012 by Screen Gems

The good news, from a Christian perspective, is that The Vow is a romance focusing on a couple that is actually married. After enduring a recent slate of movies celebrating the hook-up culture (No Strings Attached, Friends With Benefits, Love and Other Drugs), it's nice to have a romantic film that shares the notion that it is natural for people who love each other to want to make a formal and binding commitment.

But despite its intriguing premise—an accident leaves the wife with severe memory loss, and her husband remains faithful to his vows—the film's plotting and conflicts are so routine that one gets very little examination of that premise. What could have been a fascinating character study about the relationship of the self/soul (the core of one's being) to one's past, one's body, or one's words instead plays out as a series of sitcom-style misunderstandings and serial conflicts that do little other than pass the time until the characters are ready to make meaningful decisions rather than postponing them until their situation changes.

Leo (Channing Tatum) and Paige (Rachel McAdams) are a loving couple whose special bond is established quickly through voice-over narration and a quirky but sincere wedding scene where they exchange quixotic vows. She promises to "abide" in his heart. He promises to love her "fiercely." Leo's small business running a music recording studio is growing, and Paige is getting important commissions as an up-and-coming sculptor. When Paige is injured in a car accident, however, she loses her memory, including any recall of her marriage or even of Leo's existence. When Paige's parents (Sam Neill and Jessica Lange) descend upon the hospital, offering to pay bills and take care of their ...

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