Message in a Bottle, Message in a Bottle Review, Movie Review, Film Review
Michael A. Maynez   photo

Message In A Bottle

The scenic sights of the ocean is really a plus for this picture, but it almost rocks its foundation. It is nice to see Kevin Costner as a shipwright. As a distraught husband who has lost his wife, but keeps her memory very much alive by writing messages to her of his undying love, and placing them in corked up bottles unto the sea, may seem romantic to too many women, and obviously the novel sparked up all this romance to bring Robin Wright Penn and Kevin Costner as the romantic duo to the screen. Some of their screen time together generates real emotions, but we wonder why all of this takes so much time to tell.

Robin as a reporter finds the bottle with the message on the beach and her editor thinks it is worth a column. She thinks it is worth locating the man who shows so much sensitivity in his written message. She pursues the subject and with fine detective work finds him, only to fall in love with him and not revealing her find.

Paul Newman as Costner’s father lends great support in a rather small role, yet is great to see him doing excellent work. Robin works hard at trying to erase the imagery of Kevin’s former wife only to find that he had been working on creating a ship in his wife’s name. Revelations on both sides start to emerge and helping them drown in histrionics. The film for creating a plausible happenstance of muted silences, it almost becomes too much for the viewer to deal with the ending. Yet it is difficult to dismiss the work of these three talented performers.

The women will thrill at seeing Kevin Costner in the tight-lip lover, that he does so well, like in “The Tin Cup”. For this one bring your Kleenex, relax and have a good cry.

Message in a Bottle
Warner Bros.
Kevin Costner -------------- Garret Blake, ship builder
Robin Wright Penn --------- Theresa Osborne, Chicago Tribune researcher
Paul Newman --------------- Dodge Blake
John Savage ----------------- Johnny Land
Illeana Douglas -------------- Lina Paul

Directed by ------------------ Luis Mandoki
Produced by ----------------- Denise Di Novi, Jim Wilson, Kevin Costner
Associate producer --------- Leslie Weisberg
Assistant director ----------- Bruce G. Moriarty
Camera ---------------------- Caleb Deschanel
Editor ------------------------ Steven Weisberg
Music ------------------------ Gabriel Yared
Screenplay ------------------ Gerald DiPego
Based on the novel by Nicholas Sparks
MPAA Rating: PG-13

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Original Date 9 March 1999