Grab the tissues if you plan to sit down and watch The Best Of Me. It is based on the 2011 Nicholas Sparks novel of the same name. And for those of you not familiar with Mr. Sparks, he has also penned the incredibly sad ‘The Notebook' – another tear-jerker. So if you've seen that then you know exactly what you are in for with The Best Of Me.
The story, in a nutshell, follows the lives of Dawson Cole (James Marsden) and Amanda Collier (Michelle Monaghan). Teenage sweethearts, they first got together when they were 17. And, against all the odds, looked like they would make it. Then tragedy strikes and 21 years pass before they see each other again.
In rather sad circumstances, they return to their home town to bury life long friend and father-figure, Tuck Hostetler. It's clear that their relationship ended on a bad note but as they work through cleaning out Tuck's house, they renew their friendship. And slowly but surely, they realise they never stopped loving each other.
However, Amanda is now married and knows it's not that easy to simply up and leave her husband, even if the marriage is all but over. She returns home to make a decision about her future while Dawson stays behind.
It's at this point that the story twists once again and I don't plan to give away the ending. But suffice to say that when you think it genuinely cannot get any sadder, it does. Because ultimately this is a story about love and loss. And then more loss.
The Best Of Me is a story told across two time frames. And it bounces between both so roughly half the movie is filmed when the two love birds are 17 with Luke Bracey as young Dawson and Liana Liberato as young Amanda. And both halves of the tale are as good as the other. It is another solid tragic romantic drama with real depth that keeps the viewer fully engaged throughout.
If you fancy a good cry then you could do a lot worse than putting The Best Of Me on the tv. And let's be fair, James Marsden is very easy on the eyes so that also helps!