Love stories seem to come a dime a dozen these days and this reviewer has seen his share of carbon copy plots. Yet, despite these time worn tales, audience members continue to flock to these films in hopes of recapturing the spark or romance and seeing our heroes thrive. With this modern audience though, there needs to be gimmicks thrown in as well, to not only spice things up but keep the movie memorable. Midnight Sun is one of these movies (as well as the source of my review) and this novel turned movie is hoping to entertain in this jam packed weekend. Will it work? I’m here to help answer that question, so get ready for another Robbie’s movie review, only condensed.
-The Musical Score
A love story of course has to have love, kissing, and all that other stuff that makes audience members go “Awwwww” or clap in delight. Midnight Sun has got that, but what this reviewer likes is the extra charisma infused into the movie. For one thing it’s got comedy, not the over the top, ridiculous slapstick YouTube is filled with, but instead has a wittier side with well-timed flirting, awkward moments blown up, and Rob Riggle’s natural comedic ability. The comedy is very charming, much like the movie, with a natural feel that keeps the mush grounded and the story an entertaining adventure away from the big budget productions.
Hands down the movie gets props for me for the realism it holds and the sustenance it brings by avoiding that overdramatic mess we tend to get. Midnight Sun has that two teens in love vibe to it, but what impresses me is how the love story isn’t the only focus of the movie. Instead there is a making the most summer vibe, adding a little adventure for you to ride along with. The acting presented by Bella Thorne and Patrick Schwarzenegger is enough to sell this new-age, teenage love without crossing over into the overacting or melodramatic proportions. This exciting, new relationship is fun to watch, and the added twist only helps engage the audience into this stereotypical relationship to help add some originality to the twist as well.
Hands down, bringing everything together was the musical score. Part hot topic hit list and part orchestrated score, Midnight Sun has a great blend of these tracks that fit the scenes perfectly and add the extra emotional punch to pull at your heart strings. One may not expect music to add much, but in this movie it really works to add that extra element of flair.
-Acting sometimes fades
-Tangents that weren’t developed
Despite all I liked about the movie though, there were still some areas of improvement to help boost the quality of the film. First of all, the story’s nice twist works for originality, but it still is predictable as heck. The movie essentially spells out what is going to happen, straightening out the twists and keeping it on safer, though more emotional, grounds. It took away the suspense component for me, but it did not breach the integrity of the emotional dynamic of the movie.
A bigger disappointment though, is the underutilization of the other characters that are supposed to support this adventure. While I recognize this is a love story about the two, the movie goes out of the way to make some strong introductions to characters that are supposed to be key players as well. The dad gets his due, but I was rather disappointed with the lackluster integration of the best friends that after getting introduced don’t really contribute to the adventure as was promised. Most of the appearances are reduced to cameos or brief quips, with their potential stories fizzling out before it has a chance to build up. While the musical moments have a nice flair to them, the other tangential adventures don’t provide much to the film outside of a few life memories one should experience. The potential to expand on so many relationships, which is a key part to life, was lost to some other plot points that I would have liked expanded.
As for the acting, well like the subplots, there are times where it flounders with both Thorne and her male counterpart seeming to fall out of character. Those awkward pauses are a bit flatly acted and a little hard to believe in the love between lovers. Fortunately, the writing and romantic gestures are enough to offset tis inconsistency, but still the performance feels like something off of Freeform at times.
Overall, Midnight Sun has panache that makes it an enjoyable tale to watch. It’s got class, fun, entertainment and a musical soundtrack that brings all those emotional moments together. It’s true the movie is a predictable mess, and could have used some more expansion into the adventure/friendship component that makes life fun. Yet that promise of excitement with the spark of new romance can lead to enjoyable experience, assuming you don’t watch all the trailers and ruin it. In regards to the theater component, I recommend holding off on this medication for a theater visit, but scope it out on rentals asap.
My scores are:
Movie Overall: 6.0