Nights in Rodanthe



Weepy romance is tame but may not interest teens.
  • Review Date: September 24, 2008
  • Rated: PG-13
  • Genre: Drama
  • Release Year: 2008
  • Running Time: 98 minutes

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Two people nurse each other back to emotional health; some allusions to infidelity, though no trysts are shown. Friends are quite supportive of one another. Parents seem genuinely concerned about their children.


A storm cuts a violent swath through the town of Rodanthe. Couples fight heatedly. A man kicks a car out of anger and lurks menacingly.


A couple falls into bed together; only their faces are shown. They're also seen lolling about under the covers, with shoulders bared.


One use of "s--t"; otherwise, "son of a bitch," "hell," and "ass" are about as salty as it gets.


Not too many products, though the movie could serve as a tourism reel for the Outer Banks.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking

Two adults drink heavily in one scene; some additional social drinking.

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that -- in terms of swearing, sexuality, violence, and commercialism -- there's hardly any age-inappropriate content in this romantic (if cliched) drama based on a novel by Nicholas Sparks. That said, it may not interest a lot of young since since it deals with mature subjects like infidelity, divorce, and death (albeit with plenty of empathy). Adult characters drink heavily in one scene.

What's the story?

Paul Flanner (Richard Gere), a distressed doctor, heads for North Carolina's Outer Banks to settle some unfinished business. When he arrives at the Inn of Rodanthe, he meets Adrienne Willis (Diane Lane); she's filling in for a friend who owns the B&B, but the long weekend is really more of a respite from her troubles back home. Her husband (Christopher Meloni), who left her seven months ago for another woman, now says he wants to come back. Adrienne is conflicted but wants to do right by her two children, one of whom is a teenager longing to have her broken family put together again. But that may not be in the cards: Cocooned in an idyll of sorts -- a hurricane's about to hit and the inn is deserted save for the two of them -- Paul and Adrienne fall headlong into love. Still, real life is waiting in the wings; are these two wayward souls meant to be for the moment or fated to be together forever?

Is it any good?


The answer to that question is, amazingly, somewhat complicated. (It qualifies as "amazing" primarily because not much else is complex in this by-the-book tearjerker.) Lane and Gere, who previously costarred in the outstanding Unfaithful, do the best they can with thin material -- the movie feels more like an outline than a fully realized drawing -- that forces them too quickly into a swoon-fest of a romance.

Ultimately, even though it asks some interesting questions -- What does it mean to find your soul mate when you think you're way past the typical soul mate stage? What do we owe our kids? -- NIGHTS IN RODANTHE (based on the same-named book by Nicholas Sparks) inevitably suffers from a lack of ambition. Thank goodness for the lead actors, who gamely give it their all. (No one cries better than Lane.) And, what do you know? They almost succeed. When the movie's twist ending kicks in, it actually cuts near to the bone.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about the questions the movie raises. Is there such a thing as a soul mate? How do you know who the right person is for you? What do parents "owe" their children? Do you agree with how the main characters resolve their dilemmas? Families can also discuss how this movie compares to other romantic dramas. What do they tend to have in common? Do you care if certain parts of a movie like this one are predictable, or are you just in it for the escapism of it all?

Movie details

Theatrical release date:September 25, 2008
DVD release date:February 10, 2009
Cast:Diane Lane, James Franco, Richard Gere
Director:George C. Wolfe
Studio:Warner Bros.
Run time:98 minutes
MPAA rating:PG-13
MPAA explanation:some sensuality.

This review of Nights in Rodanthe was written by

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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What parents and kids say

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Teen, 13 years old Written bymarieno November 7, 2008

This movie is very good

My parents wanted to go out to lunch together so I decided to go to the movie theatres with my best friend. We went and there was only one movie that we were kind of interested in seeing, and it was Nights In Rodanthe. We didn't know if it was going to be good or bad, but once in the theatres we knew. It was a good movie all around. Their romance, their love for eachother and everything in it is just amazing. The storyline is one of the best I've seen so far. I never cry in movies and I started to cry at the end. This movie is a bittersweet tale of finding love in the most unexpected place.
Written byAnonymous October 25, 2014

So-so Nicholas Sparks based movie has sex and violence

My rating: PG-13 for violence and sexuality
Teen, 13 years old Written bykileygibbs May 20, 2009


this is the BEST movie EVER! i love it! its not that bad if you watch it, but its a little graphic for 11 and under


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