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Safe Haven [DVD]

Guide price: £8

Last updated on 29th Jul 2013

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Safe Haven [DVD]

Safe Haven is just the kind of smaller film that's easy to overlook and dismiss. It comes from good pedigree, with Lasse Hallstrom directing. Hallstrom's CV is an impressive one, with the likes of The Cider House Rules and My Life As A Dog both firm recommendations. Safe Haven is a different beast, though, a tender romantic drama that, if you're in the right mood for it, sneaks into your heart. It's based on the book of the same name by Nicholas Sparks, and stars Josh Duhamel and Julianne Hough, with the former playing a young widower with children, and the latter a woman very much with her guard up.

Circumstance throws them together, and Safe Haven continues from there. You can probably trace most of what happens quite successfully. To be fair, Safe Haven makes its fair share of mistakes that prevent it really becoming something special.

It relies quite heavily on cliches, the narrative stretches credibility, and it never feels like it's real enough to fully gel. And yet, there's still a lot to like here, with the lead two performances in particular contributing to a pair of characters who are worth rooting for, in spite of the film's problems. Safe Haven might not be a classic, but it's still worth spending some time with.

--Jon Foster

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