Movie Review: Safe Haven (2013)

Synopsis: After stabbing her abusive husband, who is also a police officer, Katie takes a bus from Boston to Southport, North Carolina, starts a new life and falls for a widowed store owner, Alex, and his two kids. However, just as she is starting to feel safe, her past catches up to her and puts both her life and the lives of her new family at risk.

Who's in it? The movie stars Julianne Hough, Josh Duhamel, Cobie Smulders, David Lyons and Irene Ziegler.

Review: My wife has the book this movie is based off of but has never gotten around to reading it. So, when I came across the movie this afternoon, I decided to watch it with her. I wasn't expecting much but enjoyed the film as much as she did.

I think the thing I liked most about this movie was the fact it wasn't as predictable as most romantic films are. The movie does a good job of withholding important details regarding what happened in Boston and that, in turn, made it harder to predict what would end up happening next, especially everything about Katie (Hough), including her name, was a lie and that was the kind of thing that could derail her budding relationship with Alex (Duhamel).

I am also going to admit, this movie had quite a few interesting and unexpected twists. The one involving the police detective (Lyons) that was using every resource possible to track her down was probably one I should have seen coming but, thanks to the secrecy about Katie's past, did manage to surprise me.

I think the most intriguing character in this movie however was Jo (Smulders), Katie's next-door neighbor. There was something that seemed a bit off about her and, as I pointed out to my wife, she seemed like someone who had a story to tell but the film never gave her an opportunity to tell it. As a result, the twist involving her, which was saved until the absolute end, was one that caught us both off guard and really made the movie memorable.

Final Opinion: It's not a genre I spend a lot of time watching but I did enjoy this film and would recommend it as a result.

My Grade: A


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