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The Lake House

Released: 2006

Genre: Romance

Runtime: 1 hr 39 min

MPAA Rating: PG

Director: Alejandro Agresti

Starring: Keanu Reeves, Sandra Bullock, Dylan Walsh, Christopher Plummer

A lonely doctor and a frustrated architect communicate through a mailbox that defies the distance of time.

A film more in the mould of international alternatives to Hollywood dreck.

Review by: TomElce

Added: 7 years ago

A knowledge of the general plot and the noticing of the visual signifiers that director Alejandro Agresti throws out early in the movie allows one to piece together what The Lake House's twist is going to be, though beyond the film's convolutions emerges a romantic film more thematically original and aesthetically appealing than many of its watered-down brethren. Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves are the pen pals destined to be together despite the unexplained difference in time between them; Keanu's character writes from 2004, Bullock's from 2006. The time-travelling link between them is the titular lake house, a creatively designed building whose location cinematographer Alar Kivilo squeezes some of his prettiest images from. Whether capturing Bullock's beautiful skin in sublime definition or throwing in a splendid observation of a sunrise or sunset, Kivilo uses the camera to make up for some of The Lake House's creative shortcomings. Such fails in an emerging success come via the decidedly unsubtle musical score and the lumbering contrivances, though screenwriter David Auburn does excel in not overstuffing the story with catchy dialogue and melodramatic monologues. Rather, the individual stories of the interlocking characters and, indeed, their deepening relationship is wrought with the same awkward silences and quiet moments as our real lives.

Rather than making a movie that caters to stereotypical ideas of what these films should be like (a la P.S. I Love You), the filmmakers here have designed a motion picture far more sensual and endearing in spite of its flaws -- we find ourselves with a film more in the mould of international alternatives to typical Hollywood dreck. The first dance and kiss shared between the leads is about as perfect as such a scene has been done this decade, while the moment in time where a character's fate is profoundly reversed succeeds despite banality because we grow to like these characters. The Lake House is far from perfect, but it rewards more so than crap like What Happens in Vegas.