"In a town that couldn't possibly exist comes a story that couldn't possibly happen -
ideal ingredients for a romantic comedy. The Love Letter is an amiable small town tale
about an unsigned love letter that passes through various hands and changes everyone's
life along the way. It's the kind of film Bette Davis might have made in the late 1930's
and even has the feel of being a remake of something from "the good old days"
The setting is Loblolly By The Sea, a picture postcard New England hamlet where
bookshop proprietress/single mother Kate Capshaw is the first to read the passionate
epistle. The search for the unknown author brings her long-time friend Tom Selleck and
young lover Tom Everett Scott into the picture before the list of candidates expands to
include smart-mouthed co-worker Ellen DeGeneres and bicycle-riding spinster Miss
Scattergoods (Geraldine McEwan).
It's pleasant enough viewing and a refreshing change to see a 40-something woman
holding centre stage of a romance, aided by great veterans like Gloria Stuart and the
wonderful Geraldine McEwan who doesn't appear in nearly enough films. Everything ambles
along nicely for about an hour but doesn't really know what to do after everyone in town
has read the letter that includes over-quoted lines like "how much I think of you
when I peel an orange" or "when I tie my shoe".
Too many thinly drawn characters and not enough incident in the final act make it
stumble home rather than fly but for inoffensive, old fashioned entertainment "like
they used to make" this DVD fits the bill. There's nothing fancy included in the
packaging; a few deleted scenes make a diverting accompaniment but it's not really the
type of film that begs for, or needs, additional volumes."
Published: October 25, 2001