Adaline (Blake Lively from “Savages”) is a normal gal born in 1908 San Francisco. She falls in love, gets married, has a daughter, and then falls in a river at 29 and stops aging. This is not like Cher, as Adaline’s body undergoes some kind of transformation the movie wastes 15 minutes on. By the time Adaline’s driver’s license says she is 45 and she looks younger than her 29, the wrong people start to take interest.
To avoid being dissected or labeled a circus freak, she says goodbye to her daughter and changes her name and moves into obscurity. She stays on the move for decades and dodges attachments, including love and anything resembling a normal life.
Adaline seems way too sad for someone who is over 100 and still looks like a million bucks. The only thing sadder is the narrator, who chimes in every 20 minutes to state the obvious and let us know why we should care. This kind of thing bothers me whether it comes from the screen or the schmuck in the row behind me.
She is about to move again when she meets Elis (Michiel Huisman from “World War Z”), who loves all things historical, including her. He recites poetry and makes her laugh, which worked for me when I met my wife 34 years ago. He thinks she is hiding something, since most women are. She is also hiding how much she loves him along being around the last time the Cubs won the World Series.
So many things fit so perfectly together here that you could see the design of the story way out in front of the character-driven experience. When I see the pitter-patter of things looking too pat, I feel pitiful. This is the Lifetime-style movie it seems it would be. Nothing in the story or direction elevates the piece to the promise of magic the movie promotes.
The leads are amazing, and they kept me looking at the screen instead of my watch, and for that reason I will give this movie 3 stars out 5. Next time when someone is stuck in time, just show it on Lifetime.
Tom Basham is an indie filmmaker. Here is a link to his movie review site: https://bashmovies.wordpress.com