Review: Young adult love story 'Finding You' finds plenty of sap
A trip to Ireland is packed with teenage fantasies in this cheesy but harmless romantic fable
In the earnest Ireland-set young adult romance "Finding You," the clichés are as big as the Cliffs of Moher.
Rose Reid stars as Finley Sinclair, a violin student from New York who goes on a semester abroad in Ireland. On the way there, she meets a movie star (Jedidiah Goodacre) and they flirt the whole plane ride, and it turns out they're staying at the same host house, a cozy B&B in the small Irish town of Carlingford. Imagine that!
But that's not all. The movie star, Beckett Rush, just wants to be a normal guy and is tired of all the supposed glitz and glamour of Hollywood. He spends his days off from shooting his latest medieval dragon movie showing Finley — he calls her Frankie, Felicity and Francine just to mess with her — around Ireland, and introduces her to the town sage, a drunken fiddler named Seamus (Patrick Bergin) who helps her unlock her own musical potential.
Meanwhile, for a school project, Finley meets up with Cathleen (Vanessa Redgrave), a woman living out her days in a nursing home. Cathleen is cranky and closed off to the world, but it only takes Finley a handful of visits to unravel generations of family secrets and to help patch things up with her long lost sister. Turns out all she needed was an attentive American listener. She needed Finley.
"Finding You" is adapted from Jenny B. Jones' 2011 novel, "There You'll Find Me," and it presents a middle schooler's fantasy of traveling abroad, meeting a hot, famous boy and magically changing the lives of everyone you meet. In that sense it's a harmless distraction, and the cast is likeable and attractive enough, in a teenage magazine kind of way. But there's not much here outside of glossy stargazing and fluffy daydreams, except for the exquisite greenery of Ireland. That's so real you couldn't fake it if you tried.
Rated PG: for language and thematic elements
Running time: 119 minutes