Love Happens is a heartfelt story about finding the courage to love again.
I recently saw Love Happens at a local theater (something I’m doing less and less these days since I signed up with Netflix.) This one was well worth it. Love Happens is the story of a guy, Burke, played by Aaron Eckhart, who has written a book on overcoming grief and now gives workshops on the subject. He wrote the book and developed his workshop as a way for others to grieve and move on. Unfortunately, it becomes clear fairly early in the movie that Burke needs to do some of the work he’s asking his workshop participants to do. He meets a florist named Eloise, played by Jennifer Aniston (who looks spectacular), and this begins to open his heart to his own grief.
I must tell you, this is the very first time I’ve ever seen a movie that validates the power of a workshop to help people heal and move on with their lives. Most of the time, Hollywood, and the mainstream media in general, thrives on making fun of this sort of thing. But Love Happens actually showed how therapeutic it can be to take time off from your regular life and truly allow yourself to feel. There is one man, for example, who signs up, but then decides it’s not for him. Burke talks him into staying. And over the course of the movie, we see an ordinary man get his life back on track. I could so relate to this guy. He was Joe Everyman. And his character was like so many of the men I know.
Love Happens is a heartfelt and beautifully acted story about loving and losing, and then finding the courage to love again. It’s also an accurate look at the process of grieving. When I went online to get some of the details correct, I noticed that the reviews were very critical. That pesky intellect of those darn critics rides again. Seems like critics aren’t happy unless a movie is about unrelenting angst, death, and destruction. Then it’s considered “good.” But something that is genuinely therapeutic and entertaining? We must banish that right away lest everyone go soft in the head or get the notion that we’re meant to go around with open and vulnerable hearts. And that’s a shame.
I loved Love Happens. And I’m willing to bet that you will too!