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Two battlefields, but only one love

‘High School Musical’ actor graduates to tragic chick flick ‘

By Kim Halpin
On April 24, 2012


The latest Nicholas-Sparks-turned movie project, "The Lucky One," was released on Friday. The story follows Logan Thibault (Zac Efron), who during his last of three tours in Iraq, found a woman's photograph amongst the rebel and discovered it to be his good luck charm. After making it home alive, he seeks to find her and say thank you for being his guardian angel.

The plot line is Sparks sweet when the woman in the picture turns out to be gorgeous and everything Logan is looking for. She's also the perfect damsel in distress to top it off, having lost her brother in Iraq and being under serious scrutiny from her ex-husband, who also happens to be the sheriff in her small town.

There are just a few, but major, plot points that I had to take issue with. First of all, Logan discerns the town where the woman from the picture lives in by Googling lighthouses to match the one she's standing next too, which seems down right impossible.

The second major issue is that once Thibault finds out Beth (Taylor Shilling) lives in Louisiana, he decides to walk there from Colorado. Yes, she walked to Louisiana.

The third and final plot issue I just couldn't wrap my head around was Beth's reaction when she found out that Logan had discovered the picture that she had given to her brother, and that was why he was looking for her. However, there's the philosophical issue of did he die so that Logan could live, which might make her upset. I still have to take Logan's side. It wasn't his fault that he survived, and Beth's grandma (Blythe Danner) even says that. While it would have been better if Logan told her the whole story sooner, in all fairness, he tried.

Despite the serious plot flaws, girls, you better bring your tissues or a guy brave enough to let you cry onto his shoulder because there are plenty of sob fest opportunities in the film. But that probably didn't surprise you. Shilling's emotion, especially in certain scenes when she is upset about the death of her brother, is very powerful, and the raw grief she feels is likely to pull at your heartstrings.

As is Beth's son, Ben (Riley Thomas Stewart), a completely lovable and adorable character. A little out of place at school, and never enough of a son in the ex-husband's eyes, its hard not to love him. His triumphs are many times because of the connection that he begins to develop with Logan, which make them all the more endearing.

The last point, one that I would be remised if I didn't mention, is the beauty of the scenery throughout the film. The book version has the story take place in North Carolina, and while I'm sure it is gorgeous there as well, the early morning shots of Louisiana really add something extra to the movie. Almost enough to make you want to walk there from Storrs.


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