Which Sappy Valentine's Day Release Should You See This Weekend?

Friday is Valentine's Day, which means super sappy love stories are headed to movie theaters. Which one is right for you? 

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Friday is Valentine's Day, which means super sappy love stories are headed to movie theaters. Which one is right for you?

The battle this year is being waged by Winter's Tale and Endless Love. The first is based on a 1983 Mark Helprin novel. The second has roots in Scott Spencer's 1979 book and the 1981 Brooke Shields movie that followed. Both adaptations are high on schmaltz. (For more on the schmaltz factor see Mike Ryan's work at The Huffington Post.) For now, let us help you decide which you should go see, that is, if you don't want to go see one of the other 80s reboots out in theaters this week: RoboCop or About Last Night.

Who would you like to see succeed more?

The kid from Magic Mike that isn't Channing Tatum or Lady Sybil Crawley Branson, may she rest in peace?

Alex "dead behind the eyes" Pettyfer plays the romantic lead in Endless Love, while Jessica Brown Findlay, late of Downton Abbey, stars in The Winter's Tale

What pedigree do you want your movie's writer/director to have?

Country Strong or A Beautiful Mind?

Writer/director of Endless Love Shana Feste wrote and directed the Gwyneth Paltrow country music movie Country Strong. Writer/director of Winter's Tale Akiva Goldsman won an Oscar for writing A Beautiful Mind, not to mention any number of Will Smith (I Am Legend; I, Robot), Ron Howard (Cinderella ManThe Da Vinci Code), and Joel Schumacher (Batman & RobinA Time to Kill) movies.

What kind of hair do you want your sheltered heroine to have?

Beachy blonde locks or romantic red Pre-Raphaelite waves 

This is Gabriella Wilde in Endless Love. She studies:

This is Jessica Brown Findlay in Winter's Tale. She is dying:

Where do you want your potentially doomed romance to take place?

The present day 'burbs or early 20th Century New York/Present day New York

Endless Love has country clubs and pick up trucks. Winter's Tale has time travel and Grand Central Terminal.

How do you take your Nicholas Sparks comparison?

"...think Romeo & Juliet in high school as dreamed up by Nicholas Sparks after a lobotomy" — Emma Dibin of Digital Spy on Endless Love 

"Mark Helprin's nearly 800-page 1983 novel has a substantial literary reputation, but what's been hatched by Akiva Goldsman, a veteran screenwriter making his directorial debut, would make you think that the original story here was cooked up by Nicholas Sparks." — Todd McCarthy of The Hollywood Reporter on Winter's Tale

Which bad review sounds better to you?

"Surprisingly sanitized despite a hefty number of perfume commercial-styled love scenes, ‘Endless Love’ keeps most of the darkness of the novel and first film at bay, resulting in a throwaway romance that’s only memorable because of how tremendously and laughably bad it is." — Kate Erbland of Screencrush on Endless Love 

"But the real miracle will be if audiences manage to suppress their giggles during this enormously cloying, sledgehammer-subtle feature directing debut by longtime writer-producer Akiva Goldsman, whittled down from Mark Helprin’s vastly richer, century-spanning novel of the same title." — Justin Chang of Variety on Winter's Tale

Do you want a flying horse in your movie?

No or Yes.

Endless Love does not have a flying horse. Winter's Tale does.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.