Sunday, 24 March 2013

So... The Notebook

Okay, someone needs to clear this up for me. Am I the only girl on the face of the planet who hates this movie? I can honestly say I had never seen it, not even the trailer, before yesterday so I started watching it with no expectations other than the fact that every one of my friends I had mentioned to that I had never seen it responded with basically the same sentence. Something along the lines of "Omg, you need to see it... you will love it... its amazing... Ryan Gosling is amazing...etc." Its safe to say I had pretty high expectations as in general I love anything that vaguely resembles a romantic comedy. Blame the XX chromosones, what can I say?

BUT (and here is where it gets kind of interesting) I HATED IT. I hated it so much that that sentence actually does need to be in capitals, and if there was something more emphatic than caps lock on a keyboard I would be using it. I'm sorry to everyone who loves this film and will probably now hate me for what I'm about to say. So if you're going to be offended by me criticising Ryan Gosling's facial hair then look away now.

The 5 Main Reasons I Hate "The Notebook."


1) Lets start with my favourite: Ryan Gosling's facial hair. Actually I'm going to expand that to cover the rest of Ryan Gosling's face, as well as his body, personality and ability to act. Okay, its probably unfair to include personality - he might be a really great guy but the one word I would definitely not use to describe his performance in The Notebook is "great." Like in any sense of greatness. At all. At any point, throughout the 128 minute running time. I was actually counting down how long before it was over which is always a bad sign. But to return to the stupid beard: it looks like a small furry animal died on his chin. I have nothing else to say, except I really, really hope the first thing Allie did after they got married (if not long before) was to hand the poor guy a razor.


2) The Time Travel. I know it wasn't really time travel, I was paying enough attention to realise that. But it reminded me a lot of The Time Traveller's Wife (which Rachel McAdams also annoyed me in) so I am going to refer to the annoying flashbacks as "Ryan Gosling and Rachel McAdams' Own Personal Form of Time Travel," in which they get to annoy people in other centuries too! Where people apparently went to carnivals, built houses, DIDN'T KNOW HOW TO SHAVE THEIR FACES, and, I don't know, wore weird hat things that kind of make them look like a Depression Era farm worker. I'm sorry but if I wanted to watch a movie about that, I could just watch Of Mice And Men or something and at least I could get to stare at Gary Sinise's face that has no dead furry animals attached to it.


3) Rachel McAdams. In general but particuarly in this movie. Allie was probably one of the more a) stupid, b) selfish and c) permenantly-stuck-at-age-17 characters that has actually been written and then acted out and put on a screen and then people made to pay actual money to go and watch be stupid and selfish and crazy and faint and cry over some guy with a dead hamster on his face for over 2 hours. I will never get those two hours back. And if you've seen The Notebook, neither will you. And if you are one of those girls who insist on watching it maybe every Valentine's Day or every time of the month, then you are looking at losing entire days of your life to this movie. One day you will probably regret this when you think  of all the things you could have done instead with this time. For example, if you see it more than ten times then that is probably long enough to fly to LA and personally hand-deliver a razor to Ryan Gosling. And on the flight, you could watch movies starring other non-crazy people, preferrably Aston Kutcher. Or Jake Gyllenhaal or Johnny Depp or basically just anyone else.

4) This is possibly the thing people most love to say in defence of The Notebook: "But they luuuuurve each other." Okay, yes I admit they certainly seem to love each other. And that's great and very cute and if they were a couple in real life I would (try to pretend to) be happy for them. But they are not, this is a movie and this movie is creepy, okay. He wrote to her every day for a year. That's 365 days of just being a stalker. How was he supposed to know that her mother (one of the actual sane human beings in the entire film) was intercepting the letters? He probably just assumed she, I don't know, was reading them and not replying. So what did he do? He kept on writing - take a hint already, she really doesn't want to talk to you. Maybe he should have just moved on and found someone else to marry and build a crazy dream house for. Someone who wasn't perhaps engaged to someone else. That's one of my biggest objections, I think, the fact that claiming this is so "romantic" means saying that cheating on the man you promised to marry with your high-school boyfriend and his beard face is this huge romantic moment. Its not: its a horrible thing to do. Allie, you are a horrible person.

5)  My final problem with The Notebook (and its a big one) is that this movie gives people - generally people who are girls - really really ridiculously high, completely-unlikely-to-ever-be-fulfilled expectations of relationships. How many times have you seen on a TV show or in a film or maybe even in real life, a woman who complains that her partner doesn't know how to show how much he loves her. BLAME THE NOTEBOOK. It has basically become the go-to movie for anyone wanting to reference a film that guys - again, in general - hate, and girls go gooey-eyed at the very mention of. For example anyone who watches Rules of Engagement (the US series) will remember the episode where all Jen wants for her "Birthday Deal" are blueberry pancakes - I think - and to watch The Notebook. Really? I can honestly think of ten thousand other things I would rather do on my birthday and forcing my fiancee to watch The Notebook would so not make the list. (Unless we were making fun of it the entire way through which might be kind of fun...)

Finally, the kind of "true love" that Allie and Noah (I just remembered his name!) share is not realistic AT ALL. He stalks her and she leaves - but only after cheating on - a guy who's only apparent flaw seems to be not being the guy she had a summer fling with at 17. This is so ridiculous it needs a whole paragraph to itself. Poor Lon. I actually feel so bad for him. He is sweet, patient, kind to Allie and his clearly mad about her but in a normal, adult-with-responsibilities way. Like "I will show you how much I love you by building us a life together and holding down a job, but even when you randomly turn up and interrupt an important meeting I will not get mad at you." That is love. The whole "I will build this house you mentioned one time and be depressed over you for seven years," is not. In fact, its defined as creepy and if Allie was a rational human being instead of essentially impulsive and naive she would realise this and run a mile.

Because what are she and Noah going to do in their house of love, besides stare into each others eyes all day? Its clear at the beginning of the film that Allie is intelligent and could do really well in her life, which is why her parents send her off to college - to which she reacts like a 4 year old being told it can't have another cookie. Not like an adult making a major life decision. Basically the choice she makes means being poor and stuck in a house in the middle of a forest somewhere and they will probably just have lots of children because, I don't know, its the 1950s and there wasn't a lot else to do. Oh wait, they do - and then she can't even remember who they are and then they all just die. What a wonderful, life-affirming experience that was. Seriously, the only recent to cry at this film is either with boredom or with the pain of scratching your own eyes out.

Okay, that concludes this "I Hate The Notebook" post, please leave any comments you may have - I would love to know what you think, whether or not you completely disagree, think I''m insane or now hate me for ruining your favourite film! What movies do you love to hate?



  1. hahaha XD loved this post! I've actually never seen it, not being a huge proponent of non-black-and-white romantic comedies, and you definitely highlighted the reasons I don't like a lot of them. great post!

    1. Ugh why are old films always just better? Totally agree! :D Thanks for commenting!

  2. There was good and bad to this movie, but seriously - screw Nicholas Sparks. There are no Noahs to be found in real life. (yes that is somewhat disappointing to me) (I love me some Ryan Gosling, but that facial hair was indeed somewhat atrocious)

    1. There were good points ofc- it kept me hooked watching to the end for one - but yeah, totally unrealistic! Thanks for commenting!

  3. I love this post for many reasons. 1. I hated Allie! She was a total bitch, who made the wrong choices and the beautiful Ryan Gosling AND James Marsden hang on her every word. (hello! just not realistic) 2. I hated Rachel McAdams in it. I love her usually so was really disappointed with her performance and her character in general. 3. I never got the hype, the story isn't at all realistic and the end is so tragic it makes me sick. I actually have only seen it a few times, because of the sheer hatred I hold for Ryan Gosling's facial hair (his talent, well, pretty much everyone's) is wasted in this film. He's gorgeous (check him out in Crazy, Stupid, Love- now that's worth seeing! also, its hilarious!) I was bored throughout this film. I felt for both Noah and Allie's husband. (are they married? I can't even remember) I mean oh my god, the ending made me feel so depressed. I swear to this day, The Notebook is not a film that should be on everyone's Must See list, it's unrealistic, full of trashy acting and wasted potential. Yes, I'm a cynic!

    1. Thanks for the idea, I'll give that a watch when I get a chance. I want to like something with Ryan Gosling in! Haha I'm glad you liked it and that there are other cynics like me!


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