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Jonathan Trager and Sara Thomas met while shopping for gloves in New York. Though buying for their respective lovers, the magic was right and a night of Christmas shopping turned into romance. Jon wanted to explore things further but Sara wasn't sure their love was meant to be. They decided to test fate by splitting up and seeing if destiny brought them back together... Many years later, having lost each other that night, both are engaged to be married. Still, neither can shake the need to give fate one last chance to reunite them. Jon enlists the help of his best man to track down the girl he can't forget starting at the store where they met. Sara asks her new age musician fiance for a break before the wedding and, with her best friend in tow, flies from California to New York hoping destiny will bring her soulmate back. Near-misses and classic Shakespearean confusion bring the two close to meeting a number of times but fate will have the final word on whether it was meant to be. Written by
Jonathan and Sara bump into each other while Christmas shopping in Bloomingdale's, when they both grab the same pair of black cashmere gloves at the same time. They go for coffee at a café named Serendipity which, Jonathan discovers, is Sara's favourite word. A firm believer in the power of fate, she refuses to give Jonathan her phone number instead, she writes her name and number inside the cover of a book, which she then sells to a secondhand bookshop, telling him that if they are meant to be together, the book will find its way to him. Likewise, she makes him write his number on a banknote, which she promptly spends, telling him that if fate decrees it, the note will find its way back to her. A few years on, Jonathan and Sara are both engaged to other people, but each keeps thinking about whether the other is their true soulmate, and then they start to see signs which they interpret as the fates trying to tell them something
This is a charming romantic comedy a heavy suspension of reality is required, but that's surely part of the point. Sara's willingness to leave her future to fate slightly beggars belief, but Beckinsale manages to make Sara appealing enough. It's prettily shot and perfectly paced the movie never flags but everything pitches along perfectly towards the inevitable but agreeable conclusion (it also keeps itself to a restrained 90 minutes, which seems increasingly unusual among modern movies). Cusack is, as always, utterly adorable, with more sex appeal than 100 Brad Pitts. A little bit of perfect escapism.
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