After miraculously remaining 29 years old for almost eight decades, Adaline Bowman (Blake Lively) has lived a solitary existence, never allowing herself to get close to anyone who might reveal her secret. But a chance encounter with charismatic philanthropist Ellis Jones (Michiel Huisman) reignites her passion for life and romance. When a weekend with his parents (Harrison Ford and Kathy Baker) threatens to uncover the truth, Adaline makes a decision that will change her life forever.
Being a closet Gossip Girl fan, I was excited to see Blake Lively in a new role especially alongside Michiel Huisman who has been amazing in another show I watch on the down low – Orphan Black. Unfortunately I didn’t get to witness Lively doing anything new. I’m not sure if it’s her or if she is continuously being cast in wooden roles, but her portrayal of Adaline Bowman was very bland (almost had me wishing Katherine Heigl had kept the role for herself).
While Adaline was certainly an average character, the rest of the cast definitely made up for it. Michiel Huisman, as Ellis Jones, was a very passionate and captivating love interest (even if it’s hard to understand why he’s so intrigued by Adaline).
Harrison Ford definitely stole the show in the role of Ellis’s father and an old friend of Adaline. I’m just going to say it… I think he’s found his new calling in ‘Chick Flicks’. He gave very memorable and moving performances in many scenes and his relationship with his wife (Kathy Baker) was inspiring.
The relationship between Adaline and her daughter (Ellen Burstyn) was the most interesting and emotionally charged in the film. The concept of not only out-living your child, but remaining physically younger than them while they become elderly, was a tough one to witness. Ellen Burstyn gave a vibrant, lovable performance which was only highlighted by Lively’s stunted, unlively one.
The story itself was captivating and moving enough to not need an enjoyable lead actress. The one slight frustration I had with its delivery was the narration explaining the ‘science’ behind Adaline’s pause in aging. It felt entirely unnecessary and took away from the magic of it all, making the whole concept seem absurd in those moments.
But narration and Blake Lively aside, it’s an interesting and well executed story with several fascinating characters and relationships. Would be great for a girls night out or date night with a willing participant.