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:: Sweet Home Alabama

Director, Andy Tennant, says this is a “love story where the decision came down to a great guy or the right guy”. It is also about “self-discovery and learning to be okay with yourself.” The decision-maker is Melanie Carmichael (Witherspoon), who is the new thing in the New York fashion scene. She has also just become the fiancee to New York’s most eligible bachelor, Andrew, the son or the mayor Played by Candice Bergen. But Melanie is not exactly who she pretends to be and is exactly single. Back in the Deep South is not only the remains of her humble up bringing (not the privileged child of plantation owners as she has described to the fashion mags) and a husband. When she returns to clean out the closet her redneck irresponsible childhood sweetheart Jake, Josh Lucas, refuses to sign the divorce papers. He has been hanging on to the possibility of reuniting with Melanie and has been working on his life to impress her. But although Melanie thinks she has grown out of her old home and husband she finds it may not be the case.

This is a sweet film with nice performances. There isn’t anything challenging here or anything particularly new. But this film isn’t pretending to be anything other than a little love story. It achieves this without too many cliches or too much schmaltz. Candice Bergen is a powerhouse and Witherspoon is both amusing and believable.

If you like a happy ending and are looking for a gentle tale you will enjoy Sweet Home Alabama.

Screening on general release.