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Not So Lucky - A review of The Lucky One

Updated on January 4, 2013

The Lucky One

Taylor Schilling and Zac Efron star as the reluctant lover in the film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' book, "The Lucky One"
Taylor Schilling and Zac Efron star as the reluctant lover in the film adaptation of Nicholas Sparks' book, "The Lucky One"

The Lucky One is formulaic romance in Nicholas Sparks' standard format

Nicholas Sparks is one prolific romance writer. His novels translate well to the big screen and do well at the box office as standard hanky fare and this movie is certainly no exception.

Zac Efron stars as a marine whose life is saved when he finds a dusty photograph protuding from the rubble of a middle-eastern bomb zone. He vows to find the young woman in the photo to thank her for being his "guardian angel".

Little does he know that the photo belonged to her brother who was killed in that zone. He travels miles to find her and meet her. As expected in a Sparks novel, a romance will ensue.

Also typical for Sparks will be the angst associated with the lovers and, at least in the woman's case, a tomented relationship with her jealous ex husband who will stop at nothing to drive away potential involvements with Beth (Taylor Schilling) and their son, Ben.

Efron is trying hard to shed his teen image built in the days of High School Musicals and like youth fare. He's done a great job of bulking up, but I just couldn't see the steel in his eyes necessary for him to play the marine he is cast as in this movie.

Overall, the plot moves along at a steady and predictable pace. Fans of Sparks novels will expect a tragedy to occur that will draw the surviving central characters together. But there really isn't anything original here.

Fans of romantic dramas will enjoy this film in it's entiety, though. Formulaic as it may be, the film doesn't disappoint and even the most jaded of moviegoers will still find soemthing here to enjoy. I give the movie 3 out of 5 stars.

What is the best film adaptation of a Nicholas Sparks novel?

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