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Endless Love Movie Review

Title: Endless Love

Director: Shana Feste

Starring: Gabriella Wilde, David Axelrod, Bruce Greenwood, Joely Richardson, Robert Patrick, Rhys Wakefield, Dayo Okeniyi, Emma Rigby.

How can Franco Zeffirelli’s 1981 romantic drama ‘Endless Love’ be forgot? The movie starred Brooke Shields, Martin Hewitt, Tom Cruise (in his first motion picture role) and the film’s theme song, by Diana Ross and Lionel Richie, became a number one hit, that received an Academy Award as well as Grammy and Golden Globes nominations. The remake by director Shana Feste couldn’t pay worse homage to the first film adaptation of Scott Spencer’s 1979 novel.

Jade Butterfield in this new version is interpreted by Gabriella Wilde, the aristocratic British model who is pursuing a career in acting with charm, smiles, and gawky swinging arms. David Axelrod’s role is also taken by a former English model: Alex Pettyfer, the Young Artist Award and Empire Award nominee. These two lead actors somehow bring back the magic of the former love story, between a privileged girl and a charismatic boy whose instant desire sparks a love affair made only more reckless by parents trying to keep them apart. But whilst in Zeffirelli’s version, David had a darker side to his character, Shana Feste seems to sugarcoat his personality, to enhance the external conflict of the star-crossed lovers, that will inevitably spin off into a politically correct happy ending.

The cotton-candy rendition of the Romeo-and-Juliet-type-drama slips into ridicule, since the young actors aren’t young enough to be credible teenagers and the plot takes some overemotional twists that forcefully accentuate Jade’s and David’s puppy love. Consequentially the entire movie drags itself from one corny situation to the next, through a flow of “endless” cheesiness.

 

Technical: B

Acting: C

Story: C

Overall: C+

Written by: Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi

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Chiara Spagnoli Gabardi, is a film critic, culture and foreign affairs reporter, screenwriter, film-maker and visual artist. She studied in a British school in Milan, graduated in Political Sciences, got her Masters in screenwriting and film production and studied at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York and Los Angeles. Chiara’s “Material Puns” use wordplay to weld the title of the painting with the materials placed on canvas, through an ironic reinterpretation of Pop-Art, Dadaism and Ready Made. She exhibited her artwork in Milan, Rome, Venice, London, Oxford, Paris and Manhattan. Chiara works as a reporter for online, print, radio and television and also as a film festival PR/publicist. As a bi-lingual journalist (English and Italian), who is also fluent in French and Spanish, she is a member of the Foreign Press Association in New York, the Women Film Critics Circle in New York, the Italian Association of Journalists in Milan and the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean. Chiara is also a Professor of Phenomenology of Contemporary Arts at IED University in Milan.

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