Challenges

The Notebook (2004) Review (Chick-Flick Challenge #1)

This post is not spoiler-free, and neither are any in the Chick-Flick Movie Challenge. To learn more about The Notebook, I recommend checking out its IMdB page.

the notebook

The Notebook was released in 2004 and directed by Nick Cassavetes. First impressions? Wow, I can see why everyone talks about this movie. It was funny, touching, I was openly weeping by the end of it and had to call my boyfriend and tell him that I loved him because man, this one hit me in the feels.

Had I heard of this movie before the challenge? Yes, I think I’d have to have grown up in a doomsday bunker to not have interacted with The Notebook in some way as a young woman in the 21st century.

Had I seen this movie before the challenge? No, I hadn’t. Not gonna lie, when this was the first movie on the list that inspired this challenge, it was what inspired me to do it. So, I was able to start the challenge off with a bang.

My Rating: 9.7/10

Breakdown:

  • Was it entertaining? 10/10
  • Did it have The Heart? 10/10
  • Were the characters likable? 10/10
  • What about the plot? 10/10
  • How did it look? 10/10
  • How did it sound? 10/10
  • Would it be good if it premiered today? 8/10

So, it’s safe to stay I kicked off the challenge with a slam-dunk of a movie. I mean, wow. It’s going to be hard to top this one.

Loved the circa-WWII setting, that’s a popular genre and aesthetic that I think is a classic for a heartthrob story of two star-crossed(?) lovers. Can you call them star-crossed if it’s not a tragedy and they actually end up together in the end? I’m not sure. Either way, it was lovely.

The music was a real tear-jerker too, it definitely played a part in tugging at the heart strings.

Naturally, the characters were extremely likeable, and the Heart was definitely there. It felt like the quintessential chick-flick to watch. Not to mention, the end, when Allie remembers Noah and they die together in each other’s arms? I was broken.

Since the movie is based on a Nicholas Sparks novel, there’s a little subtle traditional Christian undertones to it, which I felt were actually quite touching and didn’t really affect the plot. If anything, it made me cry even harder, knowing that Noah and Allie were together in heaven after a lifetime in love. Them being able to fall apart and then find each other again was gorgeous.

There were also smaller things in the movie that I thought were really lovely. The conversation Allie has with her fiance, when he’s graceful and let’s her go. The relationship between Allie and her mother over time, and the Noah’s father. The house they shared, the boat scene, it had a lot of little moments that really made the movie feel real.

The only points I knocked off were on whether it would hold up today. In short, yes, it would, it’s a great movie. I think the only thing that didn’t age well was how Noah pursued Allie in the very beginning. He wouldn’t take no for an answer, which I think was a common trope in love stories that used to be interpreted as fighting for the one you’re Meant To Be With. I think nowadays, that’s seen as wearing-someone-down and can come off as slightly creepy.

Still, he won me over, just as he won Allie over. I loved this movie, I’d highly recommend it, and I’m looking forward to seeing the rest on my challenge list!

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