From Cecelia Ahern's book of the same name comes a movie which is light and fluffy, defining the term 'tearjerker' as it jumps from issues of love to loss from one scene to the next. Considering its massive potential to be entertaining, it is, therefore, all the more disappointing that this one never really gets off the ground.
Feisty Holly (Swank) finds her world turned upside-down when her husband Gerry (Butler) is snatched away from her. She's angry with the world, refuses to leave her New York apartment and spends her days watching black and white movies while singing into her hairbrush. But Gerry had planned for such an eventuality, deciding before his death to write her a series of letters to help her cope with her life decisions in his absence.
At first the letters from beyond the grave unsettle the already emotionally-unstable Holly but soon she is depending on the notes to get her through her days, as her mother Patricia (Bates) and friends Denise (Kudrow) and Sharon (Gershon) conspire to lift her spirits and help her get on with her life. As part of Gerry's plan she takes a trip to Ireland to visit her in-laws and reminisce about her first meeting with the Wicklow native, who later became her husband.
It is while in Ireland that she sees the potential to move on with her life, developing a fleeting romantic attachment to hunky singer-songwriter William (Morgan) and discovering, a little too late, that everyone knows everyone else in Ireland, which is one of the few true pictures painted of the country in the movie. After this we enter leprechaun territory, with a few "kiss me arses" and some brutal pronunciation of words as simple as "Whelans" thrown in for good measure. And, for an Irish audience particularly, it will quickly become very hard to see anything else in the film except the wall-to-wall fake Irish shenanigans.
For what it's worth, Hilary Swank is great in the lead role. She is charming, entertaining and really develops her character on screen. The same cannot be said of her co-star Gerard Butler, though. Although providing some eye candy for the female contingent, the Scottish actor fails to grasp the Irish accent, with his character coming across as if he is constantly making a mockery of the culture he claims to love.
On the fringes of the action Lisa Kudrow, Jeffrey Dean Morgan and Harry Connick Jr all add a spark to the proceedings, ensuring that we don't forget that the script is quite witty in places and that the central storyline is a touching one, which makes this adaptation more of a letdown.
If you're a fan of the over-the-top ridiculously girlie flick then you'll probably find enough to enjoy here but 'PS I Love You' is ultimately disappointing, especially when you consider how good it could have been.