"Endless Love" isn't so much a remake of the 1981 Franco Zeffirelli film as it is an extended ad for the idyllic Abercrombie & Fitch lifestyle.
This is supposed to be a film about the throes of teenage first love—a love you would go to jail for, set a house on fire for, a love that requires a restraining order—but it's awfully tasteful and emotionally detached in its blissed-out depiction of beautiful young people cavorting in the sunlight.
Toned, tanned David and Jade (Alex Pettyfer and Gabriella Wilde, both former models) frolic in a meadow, leap off a dock in slow motion and splash in a lake, all to the blare of alt rock music to signal to us how we should react to these images. They make romantic love on the carpet by the fireplace light (but this time there's no creepy mom watching them from the shadows). Even their vaguely grungy moments—kissing in the back of a beat-up pickup truck or in the hot summer rain—feel impeccably art designed.
In short, director and co-writer Shana Feste has remade "Endless Love" but she's taken out all the crazy. Not that the original was all that great to begin with; a six-time Razzie Award nominee, it was screechy, melodramatic and over-acted, with an awkwardly flat lead performance from Brooke Shields. But at least it had passion. Pettyfer and Wilde look lovely together—although they're both in their mid-20s playing 17-year-olds, and it shows—and they do enjoy some real chemistry throughout their flirtatious, falling-in-love stage. But the sense that something vital is at stake is woefully lacking.