A worthy adaptation of a much loved novel, with strong directing and acting it is a winner for most.
Duke, an elderly man who is a resident in a care hospitl, sits next to a dementia ridden lady. He then proceeds to read a collection of notes, the notebook the title refers too. The narrative of the film follows these notes and the audience learns of what the book holds along with the elderly woman, Ali, as it is being read. Noah (Ryan Gosling) a boy in the summer of 1932, sees a girl, a younger Ali (Rachel McAdams) at a local fairground and is instantly smitten with affections. Through pushing the matter, Noah and Ali start dating and over the summer the pair start a very high sensual and romantic relationship. The two agree on it being a summer fling but find, by the end, their feelings for each other have developed a lot. When the relationship has grown to such a level that they believe it can affect there already laid out life plans. This revelation sparks possible new plans for the young couple, which goes against the plan that the posh parents of Ali had for their daughter. To put a halt to the relationship they set out to disrupt the couple and stop the relationship in the process. Both parties originally move on with their individual life's, but the movies narrative then follows their journey back to each other. Through the reading scenes located at the elderly home, that splits up the main narrative, more information is given to viewers - thus given further insight into the elderly pair. This creates connections between the two story-lines. As romantic narratives go, 'The Notebook's' plot is extremely strong in what it sets out to do- creating a chemistry between characters that translates to those who watch it. It becomes apparent through watching this film why the original novel became so popular.
For a young cast, the acting found in this film is extremely strong. Ryan Gosling, a relatively unknown working actor at the time of this films production, is perfect as the role of Noah. Portraying a c*cky, easy going, young man seems to fall perfectly into his acting repertoire. He carries half of the films plot with such emotion and confidence, that enables the audience to feel full empathy for the life that his character had been given. This he achieves by letting it seep through him and onto the screen. This is down only to the strength of his acting and as a such it never is made a doubt, during the run time, that Noah is completely fictional but based in so many real people and the life's that they have. With this role it is made entirely known his desire to become a leading film, and it could be seen that this film is the first picture to start enabling this. Carrying the other half of the films plot, Rachel McAdams fits the role in a similar manner that Gosling does. Not only does she act in an extremely professional manner throughout, but the casting directors have hit it gold with recruiting them to play opposite each other. By being so compatible with one another, the two people are able to act of each other and as such the chemistry is formed, thus making it easily seen that they are in love with one another; one of the key aspects to the film. This partnership comes down to the simple fact, that they are perhaps a perfect screen couple.
The supporting roles in this movie are portrayed by equally talented actors and actresses. This is fact that can be seen throughout the two hour run time. Whether it be James Marsden as young Lawyer/army captain Lon Hammon Jr. or Ali over constricting mother, played admirably by Joan Allen the roles seem to fit in with the acting style of the performers and as such further cements the fact that the casting directors knew what they were aiming for when filling the roles.
What Nick Cassavetes has done with this novel/ film is create a human story that is honest to the authors original version. With no major cutback, in terms of spectacle or plot, the film is able to portray the characters in the same way that the book did to those who had read it. Marking Nicholas Sparks as an Author who is easily adaptable for film, 'The Notebook' was better from not moving too far away from the written word. With strong work attributed by all those who were involved in this project, it is made clear the reason why the film has become so popular with many different people.