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'P.S. I Love You' Movie Review

Definitely One for the Women

About.com Rating 3 Star Rating
User Rating 3 Star Rating (2 Reviews)


Gerard Butler and Hilary Swank star in P.S. I Love You

Gerard Butler and Hilary Swank star in P.S. I Love You.

© Warner Bros Pictures
Two-time Academy Award winner Hilary Swank tackles a new genre with P.S. I Love You, a romantic comedy that reunites her with Freedom Writers director Richard LaGravenese. Set for release at the end of 2007, P.S. I Love You is an appealing alternative to the dramatic ‘for your consideration’ awards bait that populates theaters in December. Based on the novel by Cecelia Ahern, P.S. I Love You takes the topics of death and grieving and churns out a romantic comedy/tearjerker that’s played mostly for laughs.
The Story

If you knew your life was ending, would you think up a way to help your spouse/significant other move on? In P.S. I Love You, Gerry Kennedy (Gerard Butler) knows he’s going to die and concocts a plan to help his wife Holly (Swank) make it through the grieving process and start over without him.

Holly and Gerry have verbal battles over children and shopping and sex and future plans – the same things a lot of married couples spar over from time to time. Gerry wants more ‘hot, nasty sex;’ Holly wants Gerry to get serious about work. Holly’s intelligent and serious; Gerry’s a fun-loving Irish hunk with a wicked sense of humor. Despite the occasional bad moments and their clashing personalities, their marriage is a strong one.

But the Kennedys aren’t given a ‘happily ever after’ ending to their relationship. Gerry succumbs to an illness and Holly’s left to handle life without her best friend. Depressed, Holly becomes a hermit in the home she shared with Gerry. She withdraws from her friends Denise (Lisa Kudrow) and Sharon (Gina Gershon) and won’t respond to phone calls from her concerned mom, Patricia (Kathy Bates). Holly’s miserable and inconsolable – basically a horrible mess who’s resorted to watching old Judy Garland movies and going without bathing.

Hilary Swank, Gina Gershon and Lisa Kudrow in P.S. I Love You

Hilary Swank, Gina Gershon and Lisa Kudrow in P.S. I Love You.

© Warner Bros Pictures
Gerry apparently knew his Holly well, and understood how she’d withdraw from life after his death. In order to set her on the right track, he penned a series of 12 letters to be delivered on specific dates after he died. Gerry's letters from the grave, each ending with 'P.S. I Love You', contain very specific instructions on how Holly should plug herself back into life. Dress up, party, sing, visit Ireland, pursue her artistic ambitions, love again…the letters do their job of pushing her ever so gently into overcoming her grief and moving on without the man who made her laugh.

The Cast

Swank’s known for embracing roles that are anything but glamorous, but in P.S. I Love You she shows there is a softer side to the multiple Oscar winner. Swank does a fine job of balancing the comedy with the drama, although playing the romantic leading lady doesn’t seem to suit her as well as playing a boxer in Million Dollar Baby.

Scottish actor Gerard Butler (300) ditches action films for a while to take on the role of Gerry. Butler’s not only easy on the eyes in P.S. I Love You (his strip tease is worth the price of admission), he’s also easy on the ears. Signing on stage at a karaoke bar or providing the voiceover as Swank reads his letters, Butler’s charismatic presence on screen and engaging voice make him the right choice to play a guy who, albeit in a morbid way, plans ahead.

The other men in Holly’s life are played by Harry Connick Jr and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, and what women wouldn’t want either of those two helping her get over the trauma of losing her husband? Connick plays a guy who says everything that’s on his mind, and lightens the mood immensely whenever he’s on the screen just by blurting out totally inappropriate information. Morgan, whose career couldn’t be hotter, rivals Butler in the charm department and the chemistry between he and Swank is the best match of the film.

To Sum It Up

Death and the grieving process aren’t the usual setups for a romantic comedy and director LaGravenese obviously had to walk a very fine line to keep the film from becoming maudlin. The film hits a few speed bumps by relying on the delivery of letters to prompt Holly into action, because there becomes a point in the film in which the letters seem to be a hindrance in Holly’s ability to just get on with things. The audience is left to wonder if she wouldn’t have actually moved on quicker had she stopped getting these reminders from the past sooner. Of course, the flip side of that argument is that it would have meant the end of Butler’s presence in the film early on, something which wouldn’t sit well with fans of the talented actor.

Hilary Swank and Harry Connick Jr in P.S. I Love You

Hilary Swank and Harry Connick Jr in P.S. I Love You.

© Warner Bros Pictures
Fortunately, the appealing cast makes the at times shaky premise of P.S. I Love You work. A little on the predictable side, P.S. I Love You is however an uplifting story of loss and the ability to recover from tragedy that may have you reaching for a tissue or two before the credits roll.


P.S. I Love You was directed by Richard LaGravenese and is rated PG-13 for sexual references and brief nudity.

User Reviews

Reviews for this section have been closed.

 5 out of 5
what version to watch, Member stmoran

This is indeed a wonderful ""chick flick"" guarenteed to google Gerald Butler but, I just watched the Lifetime Movie Version and all I can say is rent the full version. What Lifetime showed after its cuts was a version that is light and superficial that would put this movie on the ""B"" list. Some of the most effective and poignant scenes were excluded. Those scenes showed the pain of losing someone, what the movie was about. How could they cut the scene that William was a member of Jerry's band!!!???? That scene added to Jerry's plan and the miracle of love. Lifetime is a joke.

1 out of 1 people found this helpful.

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