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The artist masterfully blends EDM, pop and hyperpop on a record that feels like a night out with her.
Review: “BRAT” by Charli XCX
Published June 12, 2024

Serendip-a-dee-doo-dah

Serendipity

Directed by Peter Chelsom

(John Cusak, Kate Beckinsale, Molly Shannon, Jeremy Piven)

Rated: R

 

Serendipity is another in the new generation of romances. More than a story about a relationship, it adheres to a trend re-energized by Sleepless in Seattle in focusing on the simple quest for love.

At this trend’s core are the notions of fate, destiny, and soul mates. Serendipity is unabashedly a romance, and filling for those partial to the genre. Its motivation is the intrigue of two people, destined for each other and climatically meeting, not in reconciliation, but arranged by fate.

Jonathan (John Cusak) and Sara (Kate Beckinsale) meet randomly in New York City, both reaching to buy the same gloves for a Christmas present. That coincidence sparks mutual interest, so they spend a day together to learn of each other’s lives.

They are both in relationships and don’t intend to abandon their partners. But Sara is an avid believer in fate. She has Jonathan write his name and phone number on the back of a $5 bill. She cashes the money. She writes her name and number in a book and sells it to a used bookstore. If it is meant to be, someday they will find these objects again.

What ensues is by no means unpredictable. As years go by, and each finds new love, the thought of that one magic night in the Big Apple still lives in their minds. They brush past each other on the street. Jonathan turns left just as Sara turns right. Never is this intriguing because the outcome is uncertain, but because the notion of that “special someone” being just around the corner is a familiar question.

Just as Serendipity is doomed to the label of a “chick flick,” it encompasses ideas that transcend gender. Cusak reasserts himself among the likes of William H. Macy and Tom Hanks as an “everyman’s actor,” and Serendipity uses this empathy to its advantage. As Jonathan lies on the ice in the middle of central park, while staring up at the falling snow, he remembers the chance meeting years earlier and one cannot help but reflect on life’s questions, doubts and hopes that true love is not just a notion of the past.

The obligatory ending gives us hope and the faith to keep looking.

-S.S.

Serendipity opens today in theaters nationwide.

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