out of Five
Running time: 98
Surprisingly decent romance, despite the occasional wobbly moment and a couple of mile-wide plotholes.
What's it all about?
Speed stars Sandra Bullock and Keanu Reeves reunite for this remake of South Korean romance Il Mare. They play Kate and Alex, a couple who begin a correspondence with each other after Alex moves into the titular Lake House (essentially a glass box on stilts) and finds a letter from Kate, the previous tenant.
However, things take a bizarre turn when it transpires that Kate lived there after Alex and that the couple are actually living two years apart, communicating via a mystic time-portal mailbox or something.
Can Alex wait two years to meet Kate? Or will fate get in the way?
Keanu gives one of his least wooden performances as Alex, although it helps that he's required to look puzzled for the first half of the film (as per The Matrix). Bullock is good too, playing slightly against type in that she's kind of sad and depressed for most of the film. There's also strong support from Christopher Plummer and Dylan Walsh.
There are some delightful scenes in the film and the end result is surprisingly affecting - don't be put off by the film's appalling trailer. There's also strong chemistry between the two leads and Agresti sidesteps the fact that they're two years apart by using split-screen and having them write letters in the same locations.
If you're not sucked in by the romance of the story, there's a chance you'll find it laughably awful, thanks to poorly written lines and Keanu's delivery of the world's least convincing sneeze. Similarly, the climax unfolds in a way that doesn't bear thinking about too closely.
In short, this is a surprisingly decent romance that requires a little suspension of disbelief, but it's very enjoyable if you're prepared to go along with it. Recommended.
The Lake House (PG)