The Longest Ride – a movie review by Roz Tarszisz

April 9, 2015 by Roz Tarszisz
Read on for article

One of my guilty pleasures is that I love a rollicking country and western soundtrack.

Was also keen on TV cowboys in my far, far distant youth and Rowdy Yates in Rawhide (Clint Eastwood) was one of them.  The cowboy hero of this romantic drama from director George Tillman Jr is played by Clint Eastwood’s son Scott. Two other actors also have movie lineage, Jack Huston and Oona Chaplin.

While The Longest Ride won’t be everyone’s cup of schmaltz, this drama does have endearing qualities among the corny and, sometimes improbable, storylines.

Taken from the Nicholas Sparks novel, and following his formula for introducing two love stories from different eras, we meet modern art-loving Sophia (Britt Robertson) a student in North Carolina. She is about to finish her degree before flashing off to New York to take up a commercial art gallery internship, lucky girl.

She meets Luke (Scott  Eastwood) as he attempts his bull riding comeback after a year off with serious injury.  Luke, who has courtly dating manners, brings Sophia flowers on their first date, and is both a hunk and a sweetie. In Sparksland those guys still exist.

After their first date, they rescue aged Ira (Alan Alda) from a car wreck, Sophia visits Ira in hospital and through reading Ira’s letters written to the luminous Ruth (Oona Chaplin), learns of their romance which began in 1941.

The younger Ira (Jack Huston) and Ruth are Jewish (that was a bit of a surprise) and once their religion is established there is no more reference to it.    Ruth is vibrant and outgoing while Ira, shy and quiet, has to summon up courage to ask her for a date. When Ira goes off to fight in World War II, he returns to his one true love and they marry.

However the path of true love will not be simple for either couple. Will Luke ever give up bull riding as his mother Kate (Lolita Davidovich) keeps begging him to do?  Can Sophia even contemplate abandoning her dream job opportunity?

When the whole exposition is neatly tied up you might cavil at the improbabilities, but it is strangely satisfying and I surprised myself by enjoying it.

Another guilty pleasure racked up. Take tissues.



3.5 hankies Rated  M   Released April 9

Starring Scott Eastwood, Britt Robertson, Oona Chaplin, Jack Huston and Alan Alda.

Directed by George Tillman Jr

Written by Craig Bolotin from the novel The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks

Music by Mark Islam

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