Over the years, Nicholas Sparks and his novels have been the benchmark for the transfer of books to the big screen. Most notable of those, of course, was "Notebook," quickly followed by "Safe Haven," "A Walk to Remember," "The Longest Ride" and so many more.
"The Lost Husband" is another novel to movie that brings to mind a Nicholas Sparks transition, only this film wasn't spawned by a Sparks book.
This time around, it was a novel by Katherine Center and while the title does not do the film justice, the lead characters, played by Leslie Bibb and Josh Duhamel, do catch the eye and make you become interested. Throw in Sharon Lawrence and you have a trio of leads that will attract you and they do a fairly respectable job of portraying what Center had in mind.
It is a love story, or a story of rekindling love more than anything, and when you have a duo like Bibb and Duhamel playing off of each other it makes the film work.
Both are broken adults, having come off of relationships that failed or in the case of Bibb, her character lost her husband when he was killed in an automobile accident forcing her into a recovery pattern of living with her mother (Lawrence) and slipping into a depressive state. Forced to leave by Mom, Libby moves to Aunt Jean's country farm and is soon working the goat dairy farm and learning how to live yet again.
Aunt Jean, played by Nora Dunn, is a bit of a no-nonsense type that just has expectations that are soon being fulfilled by Libby and with the help of the farm hand O'Connor (Duhamel) begins to learn how to live and deal with life's day to day trials and tribulations, including a daughter who fights back when picked on and bullied. The daughter learns to fight back with the help of O'Connor and survives a pair of school suspensions, despite the protestations of Libby.
Life is rolling along and you can feel that Libby and O'Connor are becoming closer and closer and that there are soon to be sparks flying between them.
This is all pretty predictable and despite the title which doesn't do the film justice, the movie works and is worth a look.
This film will never win any major awards, but at a time when all of us are spending more and more time at home with the shelter in place recommendations and theaters being closed, it is definitely worth the buck or so that it will cost you to watch on video on demand or your favorite DVD outlet such as Redbox.
This film could make an appearance at a theater when they begin to open up soon and first-run movies become difficult to obtain by the movie chains and independent theaters craving films to show to theater and movie starved patrons.
If you enjoy Nicholas Sparks films, this one is right up your alley and you will definitely enjoy it. If you are on a date night, again, it will serve its purpose and you should enjoy the show as well.
Ranking the film is tough, so I will award it a 3.5 on a scale of 1-5 and recommend it to anyone who is need of a film "fix" during this time of COVID-19.
As always, the recommendation here is to keep in contact with the Blackfoot Movie Mill at their website which can be found at www.royaltheaters.com and keep up with the goings on in Blackfoot. They have announced a new program beginning this week where theaters will be rented to groups of 10 or less for $60 and the rental of theaters will be spaced out to allow for sufficient sanitation processes of cleaning between shows. The seating as mentioned is very limited and movies being shown will be limited to those films currently available at the Blackfoot Movie Mill.