The World has Changed in the Last Century. Adaline has Not.
The Age of Adaline is directed by Lee Toland Krieger (The Vicious Kind) and stars Blake Lively (Gossip Girl) and Michiel Huisman (Wild, World War Z) and Harrison Ford (Indiana Jones, Star Wars). The film is about 'A young woman, born at the turn of the 20th century, who is rendered ageless after an accident. After many solitary years, she meets a man who complicates the eternal life she has settled into.' The Age of Adaline is a fantasy romance - will it be magical or will it be as dull as watching paint dry?
I'll be honest - I was forced to watch this film. One of my friends who I often go to the cinema with was extremely excited for this one so I had to go! I'm actually quite pleased I went as it isn't actually that bad. I really liked how much it was in the fantasy genre - I was expecting a dramatic romance so I was pleasantly surprised. However, despite the charming story and an impressive performance from one of the stars, there isn't much more to like about the film.
So - the negatives! The Age of Adaline was extremely slow at points - the film had a good start and a good ending - I was just lost for the 2nd (middle) act - it was boring! I just wondered after Adaline had met Ellis what could happen next other than exploring their romance - however, the plot twisted in a very predictable but weird and un-comforting way. Who remembers the scene at the end of Breaking Dawn: Part 2 with Jacob and Bella's daughter? - this is along those lines! Now, I'm surprised I'm having to put this in my negative section but Harrison Ford was awful in this film! I feel that he was really wooden and didn't really do much with the material he was given to - I put this down to the fact that Ford is a superstar and amateur director Krieger was afraid to lose him from the film by telling him to do a better job. Another thing that I didn't like about the film was some of the sloppy editing - some of the cuts felt really fast paced which didn't match what was happening on-screen - this actually made the film-watching experience quite confusing and irritating. All of what I have just mentioned are unforgivable mistakes for a film to make - boring, great talent are only there for the pay-check and sloppy post production - that shows how much the team behind this appreciated it! Another thing that just came to mind is the use of music - throughout the film, slow and magical music is used but all of a sudden a catchy pop song is used half way through - if this was an effort to wake the audience up, it certainly didn't work!
However, there are some things about this that I liked which I briefly mentioned before. I thought the film had a lot of potential at the beginning - I thought it was narrated very well and set up the film nicely. The film actually felt magical at this point. The magic did return towards the end of the film which was nice and I left the cinema feeling satisfied. The film also had emotional audiences which had audience members (including myself) have watery eyes at some points - one word - PETS! I was unfamiliar with Blake Lively before this film but she is certainly on my radar now - I was really impressed with her in this film and thought that she out-shined a megastar like Harrison Ford. Michiel Hulsman was also quite a charming character. The film also had a few comedic elements which worked well.
The Age of Adaline is mostly dull with glimmers of magic - the film starts and ends on a high note. It tries to be clever but generally fails with a strange but predictable twist. Harrison Ford is only there for the paycheque and lets Blake Lively outshine him with her superb performance. The Age of Adaline will please suckers for romance movies but I don't think it has a further appeal to anyone else. Love is timeless - you'll be checking the time a lot throughout this one.
3 STARS - C+