Director: Peter Chelsom
Writer: Marc Klein
Released: October 2001
Starring: John Cusack, Kate Beckinsale
Sara: [Serendipity is] such a nice sounding word for what it means: a fortunate accident.
This is our Christmas film because it’s set at Christmas time in snowy New York – so magical!
It’s a fantasy romance film about fate, and whether you should act on impulse or allow life to take the wheel. When Sara (Kate Beckinsale) and Jonathan (John Cusack) meet on Christmas Eve by chance, Jonathan falls in love with her straight away, but Sara believes they must leave it to fate.
If they are meant to be together, then fate will bring them back together. So, Sara leaves after a beautiful night together in hopes of seeing him again.
Ten years on, fate couldn’t have directed them further apart. But, they can’t stop thinking about each other despite not having been in touch since that one magical night. They go about trying to find each other again, and a comedic adventure ensues!
It’s an easy-to-watch romance with a ‘too good to be true’ magical storyline. Which, I am in no way complaining about. I love magical romances.
John Cusack has a brilliant comedic energy about him, and Kate Beckinsale has a wonderful elegance to her without being too ‘perfect’.
I love how both characters have philosophical sidekicks (Jonathan’s friend Dean (Jeremy Piven) and Sara’s friend Eve (Molly Shannon)) to put their ridiculous missions into perspective.
Eve: And if you’re smart enough, you learn from your mistakes. You figure it out. You… you think. You realize that life isn’t some elaborate stage play with directions for the actors. Life’s a mess, Sara. It’s… it’s chaos personified.
I love the deep and meaningful nature of this film. The underlying tone is one of strength and empowerment to do what you want, and to get what you want.
Eve: You see, that is what happens when people get hooked on the new-age life. They end up sitting at home burning candles for mister right, when mister good-enough-for-right-now is waiting at the corner bar!
You’ll walk away feeling nothing but happiness with a new-found faith in love, and a new-found sense of power over your life.
Dean: You know the Greeks didn’t write obituaries. They only asked one question after a man died: “Did he have passion?”.
It’s one of my favourite rom-coms, even though you need a decent amount of suspension of disbelief! The only thing missing was an inspirational soundtrack, I think.
Jodie’s rating: 7/10