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4 out of 5 people found the following review useful:
Flawed, but not bad., 18 November 2005

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Like others here, this movie attracted my attention because of actor Gerard Butler. I got the movie for myself (I'm a fan), but more importantly, I wanted to find a Gerard Butler film that my saintly mother can see, because she's a *big* fan. (Some of his other movies, like "Dracula 2000" and "Attila," are a little too strong for her delicate sensibilities!) Well, this movie passes the "you can show it to your sweet saintly mother" test. There is very little objectionable material here, and the filmmakers had very good intentions. It tried to convey a good message, and it did, to a degree.

The problem I had with the film was that the characters were not that well-written. I sometimes wondered how the characters could behave so stupidly. But then, I've never been in their positions, so I don't know.

{SPOILERS} I felt the relationship between old flame Sam and his wife was not handled well at all. Certainly the wife would feel jealous when Sam starts to take Sarah on outings to fulfill the things on her "list," but the fact was, initially, nothing that inappropriate was happening. Flying kites or skydiving—these are not grievous activities, especially when they are not made a secret from the spouse. However, it would have been better if some sort of compromise was at least offered (bringing the wife along on the outings too, perhaps?). I don't understand why the characters didn't at least discuss some sort of solution or compromise. Since Sam's wife seemed prone to jealousy from the start, perhaps no solution would have been reached, but it didn't appear as if anyone tried.

Sarah was surprisingly free of any symptoms of a fatal illness. That didn't ring true. Also, she seemed rather self-absorbed and to an extent, shallow. But then, so did most of the characters.

However, the film was not without merit. Firstly, I *can* show it to my saintly, gray-haired mom (who will be pleased to see a lovely Gerard Butler sporting a head full of dark curls!) without fear of any excessive violence or offensive content. Also, there is a good message nestled in there.

Furthermore, even though you'd anticipate that this film would be a "downer" movie about dying of a fatal disease, it really isn't all *that* depressing. Partly, I think it's because you don't really care about Sarah all that much. (Maybe this was just me, though.) But also, it didn't dwell too much on doom and gloom, but was trying to drive home the message—live your life to its fullest. Don't be afraid to dare. You're never too old to start a new life. It does succeed, to some extent, to illustrate this message. So, it's really not a bad little film.