FilmReview

Review: “Endless Love” Says Goodbye to Character Development

Emily Theytaz ’17 / Emertainment Monthly Staff Writer

Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde in Endless Love. Photo Courtesy of Universal Pictures.
Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde in Endless Love. Photo Courtesy of Universal Pictures.

If you’ve seen either trailer for Endless Love then you’re probably most definitely confused about the movie’s premise. The first trailer almost resembles a horror/thriller, where the girl falls in love with a mysterious boy who becomes obsessed with her and tries to take her away from her family so they can spend the rest of their lives together. This is false and not what the movie is about. The second trailer makes the movies seem like your average cute teen love story.

Endless Love directed by Shana Feste is a remake of Franco Zeffirelli’s 1981 film of same name, an adaptation of Scott Spencer’s novel. It tells the story of privileged loner Jade Butterfield (Gabriella Wilde) who, having been a recluse in high school ever since the death of her older brother, meets David Elliot (Alex Pettyfer), a charming, charismatic boy. They soon begin a typical torrid teenager love affair that would not be complete without Jade’s overprotective father (Bruce Greenwood) who wants nothing less than to see Jade seriously involved with a boy so soon before her departure for Brown University.

Right now you’re probably thinking that Endless Love sounds exactly like every teenage love story ever and yes, that’s exactly what this movie was: predictable. Cliché after cliché appear and one of the film’s main problems was the predictability of the movie and lack of character depth. There was very little character development and the story quickly became so pretentious that it started acquiring a shallow first world problems vibe.  There was also the issue of the overdone, overbearing father character, a trend that needs to be stomped out immediately.  The ‘dramatic’ part of the movie was Jade’s father’s furious attempts to pull the two teens apart, obviously only bringing them closer together.

Bruce Greenwood and Alex Pettyfer in Endless Love. Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/Universal Pictures.
Bruce Greenwood and Alex Pettyfer in Endless Love. Photo Credit: Quantrell Colbert/Universal Pictures.

The movie though wasn’t without its strengths, most noticeably the soundtrack. Every moment, whether it was full of grandeur or miniscule, coordinated with music that blended perfectly to the tempo of the film. Most intriguing was an interesting insight in how a family deals with the loss of a child. It was captivating to look at how each individual family member dealt with grief in in their own way. The reason this movie didn’t completely fail solely because of Dayo Okeniyi’s character, Mace. Mace has perfect one-liners that are both realistic and hysterical. If he had been the main character instead of David, the movie might have been more enjoyable.

Endless Love is a great movie to watch on Valentines Day. Just don’t expect to walk out of the theatre having gained new insight as to what the meaning of love is.

Overall Grade: B-

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