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Dear John (2010)

PG-13 | | Drama, Romance, War | 5 February 2010 (USA)
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A romantic drama about a soldier who falls for a conservative college student while he's home on leave.

Director:

Lasse Hallström

Writers:

Jamie Linden (screenplay), Nicholas Sparks (novel)
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Popularity
3,877 ( 121)
4 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Channing Tatum ... John Tyree
Amanda Seyfried ... Savannah Curtis
Richard Jenkins ... Mr. Tyree
Henry Thomas ... Tim
D.J. Cotrona ... Noodles
Cullen Moss ... Rooster (Dan Rooney)
Gavin McCulley ... Starks
Jose Lucena Jr. Jose Lucena Jr. ... Berry (as Jose Lucena)
Keith Robinson ... Captain Stone
Scott Porter ... Randy
Leslea Fisher ... Susan
William Howard ... Daniels
David Andrews ... Mr. Curtis
Mary Rachel Quinn ... Mrs. Curtis (as Mary Rachel Dudley)
Bryce Hayes Bryce Hayes ... Yellow Shirt
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Storyline

South Carolina US Army Special operations soldier John is on summer leave from his German base, visiting his widowed father. Being gallant on the pier, he befriends college student Savannah, a college student, and her buddies, a terminal father and his angelic son. John falls in love with Savannah, who diagnoses his beloved, gentle but weird father as mildly autistic. He plans not to sign up again, but 9/11 changes that, and she won't wait idly while their friends desperately need help. Written by KGF Vissers

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

What would you do with a letter that changed everything ? See more »

Genres:

Drama | Romance | War

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some sensuality and violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

5 February 2010 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Querido John See more »

Filming Locations:

Oak Island, North Carolina, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$25,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$30,468,614, 7 February 2010

Gross USA:

$80,014,842

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$114,977,104
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

On its opening weekend in the United States, it went to number one, becoming the film to finally end the reign of James Cameron's Avatar (2009), which had sat at the top of the box office for seven consecutive weeks. See more »

Goofs

When John visits his father at the hospital, a man with a maroon t-shirt walks into the aisle where his father is lying. He does this twice, first turning left and then turning right. See more »

Quotes

John Tyree: So there's something else I wanna tell you. Right before everything went black, you wanna know the very last thing that entered my mind? You.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Tonight Show with Jay Leno: Episode #20.90 (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

The Moon
Written by Glen Hansard
Performed by The Swell Season
Courtesy of Overcoat Recordings
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Dammit, Lasse Hallström made me cry again
2 May 2018 | by rooprectSee all my reviews

Lasse Hallström, the Swedish director who gave us Chocolat (2001), Gilbert Grape (1993) and Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009) is at it again - making chick flicks for guys. This means, unlike your stereotypical chick flick whose leading man is a hollow beefcakey stud with as much personality as the scenery, here we get a complex beefcakey stud whom the chicks can swoon over whilst the bros say "duuuuude he's cool."

In this case the protagonist is "John" (Channing Tatum) who plays an Army Special Forces character who can kill you with a toothpick but has total control over his emotions. Until, of couse, he meets "Savannah" (Amanda Seyfried) over his 2 week furlough before going back to war.

As you might guess, the story explores the ultimate long distance relationship as John completes his 1 year tour as a soldier while Savannah waits at home. Sounds boring? Well wait, there are complications. John's father is autistic and his mother abandoned them years ago. So John is forced to be the responsible one, but the whole war/love thing throws him out of whack.

Meanwhile Savannah has a few secrets of her own (and I gotta admit I totally didn't see it coming). And on top if it all, 9/11 hits and this forces John to make a decision whether to stay with his platoon and most likely get his butt blown off, or retire once his initial tour is over. Oh, and the movie begins with John getting blasted by gunfire, meaning the story unfolds in a huge flashback leaving us wondering the whole time if John dies or not.

This is a very sentimental flick, much like the other Hallström movies I mentioned, but it doesn't get sappy or predictable. In fact at least 3 plot twists took me by total surprise. And I'm talking like "whoa duuuuude I never saw THAT coming" surprise.

"Dear John" focuses on interpersonal relationships when duty comes into play - and I'm not just talking about duty toward your country (a cleverly woven parallel), but duty to parents, children and those who need help. This is juxtaposed against selfish happiness, or the storybook love. Pay close attention to the characters' choices & sacrifices, and how these choices are based on duty/selflessness rather than "getting the girl". I think that's what makes this a unique romance. Whereas most Hollywood romance flicks focus on the problems of 2 lovers, "Dear John" presents us with an ideal love that is complicated by external loyalties.

The trademark of Hallström movies is some other issue (not just love) driving the characters, and that's why these films aren't sappy or predictable. Another trademark is is use of gorgeous scenery, in this case the beaches of Charleston SC. He achieves a very nostalgic beach feeling, even for those of us who have only been to the beach once or twice in our lives (see also his film "Safe Haven" filmed in Southport, NC).

"Dear John" is a quiet, sentimental film, so don't expect action, car chases & robots. But it delivers a few tricky plot twists, so it's never boring. If you're not familiar with Hallström's style, I'd say it's artistic without being over-the-top artsy. Think of Kieslowsky (Blue, White, Red trilogy) or Wim Wenders (Paris Texas, Wings of Desire) or possibly even Steven Soderbergh (Sex Lies & Videotape, Solaris, Magic Mike) and you'll have a general idea of how this film feels.


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