Have you ever read an amazing book and, upon finishing, wished you could experience it again for the first time? I know I feel this way all the time. So when Leo (Channing Tatum) compared that situation to his current situation with wife Paige (Rachel McAdams) midway through “The Vow,” I breathed an inward sigh of relief; perhaps there’s still hope for this movie after all!
The situation they find themselves in is indeed a tricky one. After a car crash that lands Paige in a coma, she wakes up with no recollection of the past five years — meaning she has no memory of her current life or of her husband, Leo.
Upon realizing that there’s a chance that Paige will never regain her memory, Leo proposes that they start dating, and points out the one positive in a truly sucky situation: that she can experience them falling in love all over again, as if for the first time.
Despite the contrived plot, the romantic in me found myself somewhat swept away by such a grand notion; who wouldn’t want to relive the honeymoon period of a relationship all over again?
To my dismay, the majority of the movie is littered with extraneous subplots that just take away from the film’s message.
Moreover, instead of trying to piece together her current life, Paige acts standoffish and uninterested toward Leo — no mind to the fact that he loves her unconditionally, looks like Channing Tatum and is her husband.
By merging into soap-opera territory, “The Vow” loses a lot of the romantic earnestness it should have had. I relished the date scene, as well as some of the more lighthearted scenes, such as Paige gasping and shielding her eyes after Leo walks into the room naked, which has him respond with, “Come on, it’s not like you haven’t seen it before.”
Those words could apply to the film just as well.