Looks like this is Get To Know Chicago Month at the movies. Two weeks ago in The Break-Up, Vince Vaughn took a busload of tourists on a sightseeing trip through the Windy City, and now, in The Lake House, Keanu Reeves plays an architect who shows some of the city's more unique buildings to Sandra Bullock. But in the latter film, there's just one catch: they do not visit these buildings at the same time. It's pretty much impossible for them to do so, because Reeves lives in 2004 and Bullock lives in 2006, and they have been exchanging letters back and forth in time through a sort of magical mailbox. So he leaves her a map and tells her which places to visit, and when she arrives at one, she finds a two-year-old message waiting for her in the graffiti. It's a good thing nobody cleaned that wall or posted any bills there!
The time-bending premise might remind viewers of Frequency (2000), in which a father and son communicated across the decades through a ham radio. But The Lake House is actually a remake of a Korean film which came out at about the same time, known in these parts as Il Mare. The new version was written by David Auburn, the award-winning Proof playwright, and directed by Alejandro Agresti, an Argentinian making his first English-language feature. And while it has some interesting ideas and some nice mood moments, it never quite comes together.
This is partly because the filmmakers don't seem to know quite how to flesh these characters out. Bullock plays Kate Forster, a doctor who has recently finished her residency and is too busy with work, work, work to even think about having a social life, let alone a love life. She gets along well enough with her colleague, Anna (Shohreh Aghdashloo), and she has a mother ...1
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The Lake House
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