When a donor’s husband and the heart recipient are drawn to each other, it has to be through the recipient’s heart. There’s just no other explanation.
In “Return to Me” an accident takes the life of Elizabeth Rueland the spouse of Bob Rueland. Her death leaves him and the family pet heart broken. They are alone with no one. For one year Bob grieves, refusing to try and meet anyone or even socialize. The pet, who adored Elizabeth, played by Joely Richardson, refuses to stop the tradition of waiting for her at the door. At the insistence of a friend, Bob, goes out for a night on the town. Finally he decides at the insistence to go out on a double date.
Can the heart maintain an emotional connection transcending death? “Return to Me” seems to imply that there is a connection that transcends death when a donor’s heart is placed in another body.
Bob Rueland’s wife was an organ donor. The recipient of her heart, on the night of her death, received the transplanted heart and improved. Grace Briggs did not think she would receive a heart in time. However, when Elizabeth Rueland passed, the heart was immediately transplanted and Grace’s life was saved.
On the night Bob and Charlie went out on their double date, by coincidence, they visited the restaurant owned by Grace’s grandfather, Marty O’Reilly. Grace is the server and she waits the table for the foursome. For some reason, Bob is not even remotely attracted to the female he is seated with. He is however attracted to Grace.
Bob finds a reason to return to the restaurant to ask Grace out. Not being able to explain the attraction, he just decides to go with it. They become a twosome and begin dating. During one of the visits, Grace finds the donor card and realizes she has Bob’s deceased wife’s heart. Grace is devastated. How can she tell Bob she is the person his wife’s heart was transplanted into; the person his wife heart saved?
In turmoil, Grace makes an excuse and leaves. She finally decides to tell Bob she is the donor who has his wife’s heart. Bob has no idea how to handle the revelation. So, he says nothing and leaves. They stop seeing each other.
Grace decides to leave the country. By chance, Bob comes to his senses and realizes it doesn’t matter what, when or how; He loves Grace. He goes to France, finds her and the share a long hug.
This is one sweet movie. Perhaps the acting or maybe the music or a combination of both. Whatever the reason, the movie is captivating. Minnie Driver and David Duchovny make an adorable couple. Archie Bunker aka Carol O’Connor is excellent as the dotting grandfather. He simply adores Grace and wants nothing more than her happiness and for her to live. When Grace receives the heart and her life is restored, he is elated.
It’s great seeing him in a role other than Archie Bunker. He made our lives one big laugh in that series, but when it ran it’s course, he moved on to really demonstrate his acting talent in shows such as Return to me and also the series “In the Heat of the Night.” The tragedy seemed to be too much to bear for him when his son died. O’ Connor was an amazing talent. It’s believed his heart was broken from his sons death. roles.
The Soundtrack song “Return to Me” sang by Dean Martin is absolutely beautiful. Heartwarming and so right for this movie. Not just because the name is the same, but it is just terribly appropriate in it’s significance sending a message to say his wife seemed to have returned to him when her heart was placed in another.
The remainder of the soundtrack music was just breathtaking.
David Duchovny – Bob Rueland
Minnie Driver – Grave Briggs
Carroll O’ Connor – Marty O’ Reilly
Robert Loggia – Angello Pardipillo
Bonnie Hunt – Megan Dayton
James Belushi – Joe Dayton
David Alan Grier – Charlie Johnson
Joely Richardson – Elizabeth Rueland