Starring: Katie Holmes, Josh Lucas, Jerry O’Connell, Celia Weston, Sarah Hoffmeister, Aidan Brennan, Chloe Lee, Katrina Begin
OUR RATING: ★★★☆☆
Romantic drama directed and co-written by Andy Tennant. The story centers on young widow Miranda Wells (Katie Holmes), who is struggling to raise three children on her own. However, a powerful storm brings a devastating challenge and a mysterious man, Bray Johnson (Josh Lucas), into her life. In just a few short days, Bray’s presence re-ignites the family’s spirit, but he also carries a secret, which could change everything.
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[referring to the hurricane] Tucker: The weather guy says it’s going to miss us, but… Miranda Wells: You can never be too careful. Tucker: So you think I should? Miranda Wells: What? Board up? Absolutely. Look, no matter how bad things are, they can always get worse.
Bray Johnson: Well, anything is possible if you really want it.
Bray Johnson: I’m looking for Miranda Wells. Greg Wells: You from the bank? Bray Johnson: Can’t say that I am. No. [referring to the envelope] Greg Wells: She’s at work right now. You can leave it with me. I’m her son. Bray Johnson: I kind of figured that. Well, the thing is, I’m afraid this comes with a little bit of an explanation.
[referring to Miranda] Greg Wells: Oh, and when you see her, don’t tell her we spoke. I’m not supposed to talk to strangers. Bray Johnson: Your secret’s safe with me.
[whilst she’s driving Miranda goes to pick up her ringing phone] Missy Wells: You’re not supposed to be on the phone. Miranda Wells: I wasn’t going to answer it. I just want to see who it was. I’m expecting a call from the bank. Missy Wells: It says Carol. Miranda Wells: That’s the bank. Missy Wells: Oh, my God. You’re on a first name basis with the bank? Miranda Wells: Please, stop being so dramatic.
[as Miranda and Missy are arguing suddenly Miranda hits the car in front] Missy Wells: Oh, my God! Mom! You’re like the worst driver in the whole world! Miranda Wells: That’s because no one else in the entire world has you as a passenger!
[after hitting Bray’s car] Bray Johnson: Well, looks like you got the brunt of it. [Miranda angrily kicks her bumper off] Miranda Wells: There goes my deductible. [Miranda kicks at her broken bumper again in anger] Bray Johnson: Hey, hey, hey. Don’t waste your insurance on this. If you just have a little duct tape, and spray foam, I can fix this. Miranda Wells: I can’t ask you to do that. Bray Johnson: You didn’t. I offered. My dad was a mechanic.
[referring to Bray] Missy Wells: He’s not going to sue us, is he? Miranda Wells: Nope. Missy Wells: Why is he taking our bumper? Miranda Wells: Because he’s offered to come over to fix it. Missy Wells: You’re letting him follow us home?
[after Bray follows Miranda back to her house] Bray Johnson: You know, I realize I never got a chance to introduce myself. Bray Johnson. Miranda Wells: Miranda Wells. Bray Johnson: Miranda, nice to meet you. Miranda Wells: Yeah. No, not really. But I appreciate the gesture.
Greg Wells: Mom, what happened to the bumper? Miranda Wells: Karma.
Missy Wells: What’s for dinner? Wait. Let me guess. Red beans and rice, or microwaved chicken nuggets, and a salad. Miranda Wells: What would you prefer? Lobster tails? Missy Wells: Wouldn’t you? Bess Wells: I want pizza. Miranda Wells: Not tonight, honey.
[referring to Miranda] Greg Wells: You got to admit. You coming out here looking for her, then she runs into you? It’s pretty weird. Bray Johnson: Is it? Greg Wells: Yeah. Because, you know, what are the odds? Or maybe she’s just a lousy driver.
[after she burns the chicken in the microwave] Miranda Wells: I guess it is red beans tonight. Bess Wells: Pizza! Greg Wells: Yeah! Miranda Wells: Guys, that’s not going to happen. Missy Wells: Poor people can’t afford pizza. Miranda Wells: We’re not poor. We’re broke. There’s a difference.
[to Bray as the rain water starts leaking through the roof] Miranda Wells: Nice, huh? It’s our little version of Singin’ in the Rain. With pots.
Bess Wells: Wind scares me. Bray Johnson: Well, nature can be very powerful, but so are you. Bess Wells: Me? No way. Bray Johnson: Oh, yes, you are. But we have to be careful, because we get what we expect.
[referring to the magnet] Bray Johnson: Which attracts things, with a force that you cannot see, but is definitely real. Your thoughts work the same way. The more you think about something, the more you draw it to you.
Greg Wells: Okay. So, this is me thinking about pizza. Miranda Wells: Are you really being serious right now? Bess Wells: I like when the cheese is all melted and gooey. Bray Johnson: And what about you? Missy Wells: Pepperoni and sausage. Greg Wells: Ooh. And stuffed crust. That’s what makes it. [just then there’s a knock on the door from a pizza delivery guy] Pizza Guy: Okay. I’ve got a medium cheese and medium pepperoni with stuffed crust for Miranda Wells. Miranda Wells: Did you do this? Bray Johnson: Don’t look at me. Miranda Wells: You got the right name, but we did not order those. Pizza Guy: A guy named Tucker called it in. He even left a tip because of the storm. Miranda Wells: That was so nice. Thank you.
Missy Wells: [to Bray] Are you like a Buddhist or something? Miranda Wells: Missy, what kind of question is that? Missy Wells: I don’t know. You just seem different. Greg Wells: Unlike mom. Always stressed. Miranda Wells: I’m not always stressed. Greg Wells: You so are!
Missy Wells: [to Miranda] You’re exhausted the minute you wake up. Bray Johnson: Okay. Alright. I see how it goes. Everybody gang up on mom, who works all day, and has friends like Tucker. And if it wasn’t for her, you guys would all be eating microwaved plastic. Miranda Wells: Yeah. What he said. Cheers. Bray Johnson: Cheers. Missy Wells: You guys are funny.
Bray Johnson: And, no. I’m not a Buddhist. I just, I’m open to the possibility that whatever happens, even the bad stuff, can lead to better things. Missy Wells: Not in this house.
Bray Johnson: About today. I just want to say that everything was, I don’t know, really unexpected. Miranda Wells: Yeah. I never thought I’d say this, but it was a pleasure running into you. Bray Johnson: You have quite a family. Miranda Wells: Thanks. They’re good kids.
[after the hurricane causes a tree to break through the roof of their house] Bess Wells: But why does this always happen to us? Miranda Wells: We’re unlucky, I guess.
Bray Johnson: Are you all okay? Miranda Wells: I swear. My whole life is like that gut feeling that something really bad is going to happen, and then it does.
Bray Johnson: You know, things don’t have to be a series of unfortunate events. Miranda Wells: Well, it sure as hell feels that way. Bray Johnson: I know, but I’ve found that when I think about what I want instead of what I don’t want, my life is just so much better. Miranda Wells: You’re one of those people who wakes up happy, aren’t you?
Bray Johnson: Let me help. Miranda Wells: How? With more magic foam? Bray Johnson: I just renovated this nice little Tennessee farmhouse. This won’t be a problem. It’ll just take time and… Miranda Wells: And money. Both of which I don’t have. Bray Johnson: Not as much as you think.
Miranda Wells: Why are you helping me? Bray Johnson: Well, because I can. Miranda Wells: Okay. You’re hired. But only because you brought me coffee. Thank you.
[referring to Bray] Missy Wells: What’s he doing here? Miranda Wells: He’s fixing the roof. Missy Wells: How? We’re broke, remember? Miranda Wells: I don’t know. Magnets.
[referring to Bray] Bobby: Who is this complete stranger that you are trusting your home with? Miranda Wells: Not everyone is a serial killer, Bobby. I mean, he’s a college professor for goodness sake. Bobby: Well, you can’t be too careful these days. Miranda Wells: The only thing of value in that house are the kids, and they’re coming with us. So I’m just going to believe that he’s not going to screw us, and he’s going to do the best job he can. Miranda Wells: Have you met people lately?
[referring to Bobby] Bray Johnson: She seems worried about you. Miranda Wells: Well, we’re all used to playing defense around here. But I appreciate what you’re trying to do. Bray Johnson: What am I trying to do? Miranda Wells: Give us hope. But I am trying to raise my kids to be realistic.
Miranda Wells: Their father was a dreamer, and apparently that’s genetic, especially with Greg. And I just want to keep their feet firmly planted on the ground. Bray Johnson: Roger that. Miranda Wells: And your next question is about my husband, but you’re too polite to ask. He died just over five years ago. Bray Johnson: I’m sorry, truly. Miranda Wells: Me too. He’s really missing out.
[as Bobby is taking Miranda and the kids to her house] Bobby: We got a pond and a gazebo. Bess Wells: What’s a gazebo do? Greg Wells: Just looks pretty. Missy Wells: It’s where old people sit and complain about their knees and stuff. Miranda Wells: Missy! Missy Wells: What? You said it.
Tucker: How do you know Miranda? Bray Johnson: Oh, well, I don’t, really. Tucker: Why are you fixing her roof? Bray Johnson: That’s a very good question.
Bray Johnson: How long have you two been together? Tucker: Oh, a few years. She came to work for me about a year after her husband died. Good guy too, from what I hear. Bray Johnson: That must have been really painful. Widowed. Three kids. Tucker: I think it’s made her more cautious. I’m the same way. Why I haven’t pushed things farther. You know? Bray Johnson: Well, things can change if you want them to. Tucker: I just want her to be happy. Bray Johnson: Can’t say I blame you.
[on the phone] Miranda Wells: Where are you? What are you doing right now? Bray Johnson: I’m sitting on your roof, taking in this gorgeous sunset. You? Miranda Wells: Stressing. Bray Johnson: Is it about the money? Miranda Wells: No. It’s everything. My job, kids, Tucker.
[after Miranda tells him she might have to sell her house] Bray Johnson: Look. When the time is right, you’ll know what to do. Miranda Wells: Is that another one of your life lessons?
Bray Johnson: I went through a divorce ten years ago. It really knocked me on my a**. Miranda Wells: Were there kids? Bray Johnson: No, no. We wanted to save up a little money before starting a family, and it turns out she started one with somebody else. Miranda Wells: Oh, my God. You must have been… Bray Johnson: Devastated. Yeah. And then I got angry and started blaming everything on everybody else. Miranda Wells: That doesn’t sound like you. Bray Johnson: Not anymore. That was before. Miranda Wells: Before? Bray Johnson: Before another kind of wake-up call.
Bray Johnson: It’s just that sometimes the best thing to do is wait till everything becomes clear.
[after Bray fixes their roof] Bobby: What exactly is that thing on the roof? Bray Johnson: Weather-proof Band-Aid.
[referring to what he fixed the roof with] Missy Wells: Where did it come from? Bray Johnson: It just appeared. Bess Wells: Like the pizza? Miranda Wells: No. No, no. That was because of Tucker, and this is because Bray worked really, really hard to find something that would fit. Bray Johnson: Well, it was probably floating around in the bayou waiting to be useful. And then it found me. Miranda Wells: Or it was just a coincidence.
Bray Johnson: “Coincidence is God’s way of remaining anonymous.” Greg Wells: Who said that? Bray Johnson: Einstein. Missy Wells: E equals MC squared guy? Bray Johnson: He also said that every person should ask themselves, “Is this a friendly universe?” Bobby: Why? Bray Johnson: Well, because your answer determines your life.
Greg Wells: Could I ask you a question? Bray Johnson: Shoot. Greg Wells: What happened to the envelope? Bray Johnson: I haven’t given it to her yet. Greg Wells: Why not? Bray Johnson: Well, I put it in the mailbox after the pizza, but it flew away. So I had to get a new one. Greg Wells: What’s in it? Bray Johnson: Grown-up stuff. But definitely something good.
Miranda Wells: I still don’t understand why you helped us. Bray Johnson: I think you and I collided for a reason. And who’s to say, maybe we helped each other.
Miranda Wells: Something about us colliding for a reason? Bray Johnson: Yeah. Well, maybe it was just a chance for me to meet a really cool woman. You’re doing a hell of a job raising three kids on your own. Miranda Wells: Thank you. Although, I think I got the better end of the deal.
[giving a speech at his restaurant] Tucker: Every now and then a storm comes along, and it not only rattles your business, but it rattles your life and the choices you’ve made in that life. I’ve always wanted a family. For whatever reason, it just wasn’t in the cards. You know, maybe I focused too much on the business. But I would like to change that right here and right now. [he kneels in front of Miranda and opens a ring case] Tucker: Miranda Wells, will you marry me? Miranda Wells: Yeah. Tucker: Yes!
[referring to Greg being upset] Bray Johnson: Well, my guess is the reason you’re upset has nothing to do with that thing you threw away. Greg Wells: How would you know that? Bray Johnson: Word is your mom got engaged. Greg Wells: Yeah. Bray Johnson: Which I imagine stirs up a whole boatload of feelings about your dad. Greg Wells: Yeah. Bray Johnson: Which I suspect you just took out on whatever it is that was in that box you just threw away. Greg Wells: [chuckles] Maybe. Yeah.
[referring to his invention] Greg Wells: It’s supposed to be an automatic chicken feeder for science class. If it worked, I could sell it, and we could make some money, so mom wouldn’t have to marry Tucker. Bray Johnson: And why would you say that? Greg Wells: She doesn’t love him. Bray Johnson: You sure about that? Greg Wells: Not like dad.
Bray Johnson: Let me tell you something. All your dad ever wanted was for you to be happy. Greg Wells: How would you know that? Bray Johnson: Well, because dad’s are like that.
Missy Wells: Why are you so nice to us? Bray Johnson: You get what you give. [she gives him so ice tea] Bray Johnson: See?
[as Missy is complaining that no one will come to her birthday party] Bray Johnson: Let me ask you a question. What would you rather have? Two hundred Instagram friends, or five real ones? Missy Wells: Five real. Bray Johnson: And are they coming here tomorrow? Missy Wells: Yep. Bray Johnson: Okay. Then focus on having a good time with them.
Bray Johnson: What would make you happy? Not your friends, you. [Missy shrugs her shoulders] Bray Johnson: Wait. If you don’t know what you want, how can you ask for it? Missy Wells: Taffy. Bray Johnson: Hm? Missy Wells: We used to make taffy when I was a kid. All of us. Mom loves taffy. Bray Johnson: Well, there you go.
Miranda Wells: Bray? I don’t understand what’s happening here. Bray Johnson: What do you mean? Miranda Wells: Well, I’m just, I don’t know. I’m having a hard time believing that all of this is any better. I guess I just have been worried for so long that maybe I don’t know how to be happy anymore.
[as Bobby is watching Bray and Miranda from the window] Bess Wells: What you doing, Nana? Bobby: Just keeping an eye on your mother. Bess Wells: How come? Bobby: That’s what you do when you love someone. Bess Wells: Then I’m going to watch you watch them. Bobby: Oh, I’m all done watching.
Bobby: You are a very lucky girl. Miranda Wells: Aren’t I just? Bobby: Not many men would be willing to take on somebody with your baggage. Miranda Wells: That’s an awful thing to say. Bobby: Why? It’s true. I mean, three kids, a mountain of debt. Miranda Wells: It’s not a mountain. Bobby: Well, it’s not a molehill either. Miranda Wells: You make me sound like some sort of charity case.
Miranda Wells: Aren’t you tired of living under a cloud? Bobby: Nobody ever said that life was easy. Miranda Wells: I don’t want it to be easy. But I do want it to be worth it. Bobby, when are you going to stop making everything about loss and fear, rather than gain and joy?
[referring to Bray coming to Missy’s birthday party] Tucker: I think it’s weird. Miranda Wells: He helped me, he helped Greg, he helped Missy. Tucker: Now he’s helping himself to my fiancée. Miranda Wells: You’re being ridiculous. Tucker: Am I? Miranda Wells: He’s a family friend, and he’s coming to the party. Get over it.
Missy Wells: Next time I ask for a party, you have permission to ground me for life!
[after finding out that Bray knew her husband and was on the same plan that killed him Bray Johnson: Miranda, the patent just cleared last month. I brought you the papers as soon as I had them. Then the storm came, and you just, you seemed so… Miranda Wells: Frail and helpless? Is that what you think of me? Bray Johnson: No. Far from it. Miranda Wells: I don’t need anyone to fix me! Bray Johnson: I thought that if I could just show you. Miranda Wells: You just need to go! You just need to get the hell out!
Bray Johnson: Let me ask you something. Can you see yourself being a lawyer? Sloane: Yeah. Definitely. Bray Johnson: Then so can I.
Miranda Wells: I was caught off guard the other night when Tucker proposed. Most people prefer that sort of thing be done in private, because it’s a big deal, and very intimate. And I think he was afraid I might say no, and so he hedged his bet a little by doing it in public. But the truth is, I should’ve discussed it with you guys first, because it affects everybody. It’s not just about me. Missy Wells: You’re the one who has to sleep with him. Miranda Wells: Well, that’s not the point, but thank you for that. Greg Wells: No. The point is, what do you want, mom? Miranda Wells: I don’t know. Missy Wells: Well, if you don’t know, how are you supposed to ask for it? Miranda Wells: I guess I should figure that out, shouldn’t I?
Greg Wells: Bray told me a running back once said that before the snap, he could see the exact hole he’s going to run through. And then he trusts. He believes that his guys are going to make their blocks. And sure enough… Miranda Wells: Okay, cowboy. Come on. Hostess: Miranda? Party of four? Miranda Wells: I thought it was a half an hour wait. Hostess: Well, the dad forgot his wallet, so they left. Greg Wells: Touchdown! Alright.
[reading Bray’s note that he had left in her mailbox before the hurricane] Bray Johnson: “Miranda, I should’ve said something about all this the moment I realized who you were, and I feel really bad I didn’t. I only knew Matt a few days. He was a special man who loved his family dearly.”
Missy Wells: Bray. Miranda Wells: What about him? Missy Wells: I never would’ve thought of taffy if it weren’t for him. He just made everything lighter. I mean, look at that skylight. It’s totally Goodnight Moon in here.
Missy Wells: Have you called him? Miranda Wells: No. Missy Wells: Why not? Mom, he’s everything he said he was. He just couldn’t get out of his own way is all. And the sibs and I were talking. You were so much more relaxed with him. Miranda Wells: Do your homework. Missy Wells: What? You were. Miranda Wells: Honey, I barely know the man. Missy Wells: But you liked what you knew.
[after Miranda breaks off their engagement] Miranda Wells: Don’t you want to yell at me or something? Tucker: Would it change your mind? Miranda Wells: No. But I think you’re wonderful. Tucker: Right back at you.
Miranda Wells: It was alright there in the mailbox. Bray made Matt co-owner of the patent, even though it took him another two years to perfect it. Bobby: Well, I still think he should’ve said something. Miranda Wells: I know. He tried.
[after she’s told Bobby she broke up with Tucker and is going back to school] Miranda Wells: Look, I know that you probably think this whole second chance thing is stupid. Bobby: You’d be wrong.
[on the phone, after Miranda goes to visit Bray at his house] Miranda Wells: You should have seen my face when your sister opened the door. Bray Johnson: [laughs] It couldn’t have been any worse than mine when Bobby answered yours. Miranda Wells: Yeah. Okay. You win. Bray Johnson: But, in a way, it all kind of worked out. She and I got to clear the air about, you know, pretty much everything really.
Miranda Wells: Where are you right now? Bray Johnson: I’m headed north on the 59. You? Miranda Wells: I’m heading south on the 65. Bray Johnson: Just two ships passing in the night, huh? Miranda Wells: Well, unless they want to stop for a coffee somewhere. Bray Johnson: And maybe grab a waffle? Miranda Wells: You like waffles? Bray Johnson: Oh, yeah. I particularly like the ones just off exit 47 near Tuscaloosa. Which we both should be reaching, what, about sun-up? Miranda Wells: Well, what’s a couple more hours when it’s taken me this long to realize I can have anything I want? Bray Johnson: Then don’t hang up.
[last lines; Miranda and the kids are now living with Bray who has bought a pony for Bess] Bess Wells: Mommy, look! It’s a pony! Thank you so much, Bray. Miranda Wells: Imagine that? Bray Johnson: Say hi? Bess Wells: Hi!
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