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Customer Review

78 of 87 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Never forget who you are..., October 1, 2002
I was a bit hesitant to watch this film at first because romantic-love-triangle-comedies all end the same way. Plus before the movie started, the audience was packed with high school teenagers with their cellphones. (They could litterally fiddle around with them for hours while looking seemingly busy.) But my mom insisted and I obliged. Anyways, the movie turned out to be pretty sweet and heartwarming.
Melanie Carmichael (aka Melanie Smooter), played by Reese Witherspoon, is an up-and-coming New York City fashion designer who has just been proposed to by Andrew (Patrick Dempsey), the mayor's son. (Quite an impressive proposal I might add, with the Tiffany store open just for them.) There's only one problem, she's still legally married to Jake (Josh Lucas) in Alabama. That's where the real story begins. Melanie drives back to her hometown and nags Jake to sign the divorce papers. He drags his feet while Melanie gets some time to get reacquainted with his family and friends, whom she left for seven years. She desperately wants to believe that she's a whole new person (with the last-name change and all), and ends up hurting the ones who love her. Does she get her divorce and who will she be with in the end? Ah, for that you'll have to watch the film!
I think the more interesting aspect of this film is watching Melanie come to her senses and acknowledge her roots. In New York, she might have had to cover up who she really is to get to where she's at -- changing her last name and fabricating a tall tale about her family. But it was a lie waiting to be exposed. When she goes back to Alabama and brings this pompous personality back with her she is reminded that it won't get her anything but the disappointed looks of her friends and family; the people she left behind.
In a nutshell, even though the ending was relatively predictable, the story is poignant enough and had sufficient humorous scenes in it to keep the audience hooked. (I particularly liked it when Melanie realizes that being married to Jake means that they still have a joint account at the local bank.) Also, I think Reese Witherspoon gave a good performance, and it's always nice to see Candice Bergan in a frenzy.
This is one of the better romantic comedies I've seen this year.
LEAP rating (each out of 5):
L (Language) - 3 (Cute, has its sentimental moments. Never boring.)
E (Erotica) - 0 (n/a)
A (Action) - 0 (n/a)
P (Plot) - 3 (In order to get married, Melanie must get a divorce, but going home and realizing how much she's left behind forces her to reconsider.)
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Showing 1-2 of 2 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Apr 2, 2014 8:46:42 PM PDT
Jessica Loy says:
This is also one of my favorites and your right she does come to her senses and realize what she left behind. She may have changed her last name but when she went home everything she left behind fit. I think that her being back with her true love Jake made her realize this. You can go to a big city like New York but if your from a small town like she was you have to remember to be who you are and remember where you came from. I'm from Alabama and I'm proud of it.

Posted on Feb 29, 2016 10:12:24 PM PST
Alvin, thanks for the thorough, non spoiler review, but most of all, thanks for the "LEAP"
standard! That's cool! I might adopt it, try it out and see how it fits. Even though I'm a chick,
I don't like just romantic stories. Some romantic comedy is worthwhile if it shows some transformation toward more honesty or betterment, so your review helps me choose.

I just saw Josh Lucas in "Secondhand Lions" with Robert Duval and Michael Caine, and even though it was nearly a cameo, I was touched by his ability to act as if he had grown up in the story, so came looking for more.
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