Rose Reid Jedidiah Goodacre Katherine McNamara
Tom Everett Scott Vanessa Redgrave Patrick Bergin
Finding You. I was turned off by the title right away; what does that even mean? Another rom com? Then I saw the movie. Wow! The number of connotations of the phrase is so artfully blended into the story, I was incredulous by the end.
Finley Sinclair (Reid) is a high school graduate who, after failing a violin audition, decides she wants to spend a year abroad in Ireland, just as her brother did. (Her brother is part of the story.) By happenstance, on the airplane over to Ireland, she meets a famous movie star, Beckett (Goodacre), who tries to charm her with his usual skills, but she is completely turned off and mistrusting. She had picked up a film rag on the trip and seen his picture plastered all over with all his hysterical fans and adoring leading lady (McNamara).
It turns out that her host family in Ireland—the same one that had hosted her brother—has inherited an inn. And who should Finley meet on her first day there? Beckett—you guessed it. All their initial meetings are prickly and verbally combative, so of course you figure they will be entangled.
But not in the usual ways, and that is the charm and essence of a story that goes beyond light and cute and instead reflects the real challenges encountered in our modern world, i.e., the power of money and the responsibility it brings for some people, the burdens of fame, the double binds encountered by a parent’s control over his child, and, finally, whom to trust in life.
Writer-director Brian Baugh, who started out as a cinematographer, but quickly transformed into a writer-director-producer with a commitment to stories that are inspiring and relevant, has created a film that weaves in these concepts into his work that will elate and inspire, as well as produce a chuckle. “Things are not always as they seem” is one of those adages that stand out loud and clear when a young woman is not sure of a new suitor, a volunteer at an old folk’s home meets a crusty grouchy old woman, (Redgrave) and a sleeping drunk (Bergin) is being routed off a village bench in the daytime.
So, Finding You is about Finley finding herself and finding her love, Beckett finding himself and finding his love, Finley’s finding her brother, and an old woman and her estranged sister finding each other. That’s a tall order for a movie, but it has succeeded here with all the elements necessary. The acting is superb, especially by Rose Reid, Jeddiah Goodacre, Tom Everett Scott as Beckett’s father/manager, and Vanessa Redgrave (what a thrill to see her again!).
One of those good-for-the-soul movies that will still inspire you and make you chuckle.
Grade: A By Donna R. Copeland