When married couple Paige (Rachel McAdams) and Leo (Channing Tatum) are in a terrible car accident, Leo is fine except for a few bumps and bruises, but Paige ends up in a coma (she had taken her seat belt off and she went flying through the windshield. That’s why it’s important to always keep your seat belt fastened!!). When Paige wakes up from her coma, she has brain injuries that cause amnesia, but she’s forgotten only the past few years of her life. To put it another way, she’s lost all her memories involving her husband, who is now a stranger to her.
Paige is the love of Leo’s life, and in flashbacks, we get to see the little things that Leo does for Paige that make her fall in love with him. For example, when she was at work with a cold, he left her a box filled with medicine, tissues, etc, and every object in the box had a Post-It on it with something he had written on it, all to make her feel better. Or when he wanted Paige to move in with him, he didn’t just ask her, he spelled it out for her, in blueberries!! What a guy!! While Paige is recovering, we are taken on a journey through Paige and Leo’s relationship, from when they first met to their rather unconventional wedding (it looked like it was in a museum and they definitely weren’t supposed to be there, since the security guards chased them out).
One day, during Paige’s recovery, Paige’s parents Rita and Bill Thornton (Jessica Lange and Sam Neill) show up. Leo has never met them, and it turns out that Paige had a falling-out with her family several years ago and hasn’t spoken to them since. But, her parents see Paige’s memory loss as a way to have their daughter back. Perfect timing, too, as Paige’s sister Gwen (Jessica McNamee) is about to be married. Paige ends up moving back in with her family so they can take care of her. This is not good for Leo and his plan, which is to get Paige to fall in love with him again (since her memory shows no signs of returning).
Unfortunately for Leo, Paige does remember her ex-fiancé Jeremy (Scott Speedman) who’s kind of a jerk (he makes a comment at Gwen’s wedding and Leo punches him in the face for it). Now, Leo is NOT a violent guy, not at all, but between the stress of his wife’s losing her memories, his trying over and over to win her affection again, and his failing business, who wouldn’t deck a guy who pretty much vowed that he would sleep with your wife??
Will Leo succeed in his mission?? Will Paige regain her memories?? I’m not telling here because that would be spoilers!! Overall, “The Vow” was definitely a chick flick. I don’t know of any guys who even want to see this movie, which is fine, because it is totally geared towards women. I liked it because while it wasn’t totally depressing, it was a little sad but had the right amount of light-heartedness to balance it out. I wasn’t disappointed with the acting or the story; I thought it flowed well and didn’t drag or have anything unnecessary going on.
Interestingly (to me at least,) “The Vow” was quite similar to the plot of the final episodes of a certain spy-related TV series that just ended last month. It was similar in that the main female characters had their memories wiped, but only the past few years’ worth, and their husbands had to try to make them fall in love with them all over again. There have also been comparisons to another Rachel McAdams movie, “The Notebook”, which is a great movie, but “The Vow” is not as sad as that one.
A bit of trivia: “The Vow” is based on a true story. At the end of the movie, we get an update on the couple the movie is based on, but I won’t let on if they are a couple . . . or not. I guess you will just have to find out for yourself.