The Longest ride is basically a chick flick extraordinaire. There is almost nothing about that hasn't been designed to make you swoon, go awwwwww or cry. That is because it is based on a Nicholas Sparks book so think The Notebook, Dear John or The Best Of Me and you get the idea.
Sophia (Britt Robertson) is in college in South Carolina when her friend drags her to a bull-riding contest where Luke Collins (Scott Eastwood) is getting back in the saddle after a very serious accident the year before. The two hit it off and after a bit of too and fro, go on a date. On the way back from the date they come across a car accident and rescue the driver, Ira Levinson. Ira (Alan Alda) is brought to the hospital and as he has no family, Sophia decides to start visiting him. There she starts to read him letters he wrote to his wife (she rescued them from the car) and the two soon bond over their love of art.
The movie skips between two time-zones – the present day with Sophia and Luke, and the past with Ira and his wife Ruth (Oona Chaplin). So essentially we have two love stories in play, both of which are very sweet. But of course, this is a Sparks adaptation so the path to true love does not run smoothly. Sophia and Luke realise that despite their feelings for each other, her dream is to work in a New York city art gallery and he wants to stay on the bull riding tour. He simply doesn't fit in with her world. So will these love birds get their happily ever after? You'll have to watch The Longest Ride to find out.
Suffice to say that this is a movie designed to hit all the right notes. The lead characters are likable and unsurprisingly beautiful. The setting is jaw-droppingly gorgeous and the love stories are kept moving along at a steady pace. While it may not win any awards, what it does, it does well. It's heartwarming and sweet without being overly saccharine and is a solid romantic drama.