Inside of the bag, Rory discovers a beautifully penned old, handwritten tale of love and loss between an American serviceman and his French love taking place in a 1940ís era Paris. Rory is transfixed by the story, so much so that he must transcribe it. When Dora discovers it on his laptop and proclaims him to finally be the great writer she knew he was, Rory just goes with it, unable to disappoint her. Imagine his surprise when "his" novel is scooped up by the prime agent at his office and he becomes an overnight sensation. Now his own novels are being accepted and flourishing and everything seems fantastic until a mysterious old man (Jeremy Irons) steps out of the shadows, claiming to be the actual author of the story. What should Rory do? He has literally stolen the manís life, since the story was written following the very personal and disastrous death of a loved one. Is there any way for Rory to make amends without completely throwing his own life into a tailspin?
Interestingly enough, the story is told through Clay Hammond (Dennis Quaid), a well known and respected author who is doing a reading of his own soon-to-be released novel chronicling the story of Rory and the stolen book. In the audience is a beguiling and determined young writer named Daniella (Olivia Wilde) who manipulates herself not only into an personal audience with Clay, but also his apartment. She seems determined to force Clay into revealing the truth of the novelís origins.
Woven throughout Clay and Daniellaís interactions and Roryís ups and downs is the story of the young American in Paris (Ben Barnes) and his beloved Celia (Nora Arnezeder). Their love is beautiful yet tragic, set against the backdrop of a post-war Paris.
The Words is billed as a romantic thriller, but it is far more of a drama than anything else, yet it has a quiet mystery to it. I thoroughly enjoyed it, but itís not an edge-of-your-seat ride for sure. After watching the special features, I found it even more intriguing that Bradley Cooper has been "involved" with this project since its inception, being childhood friends with Writers/Directors Brian Klugman and Lee Sternthal. Fortunately, he got famous and was able to help spur things along to get the movie made.
There are a handful of special features such as the behind the scenes workings of how the film was brought to the screen, as well as two small featurettes on the pairs, "Clay and Daniella" and "The Young Man and Celia." Both are worth watching, but are nothing mind-blowing. There is also an Extended Special Edition of the film, which runs about 5 minutes longer than the Theatrical version.
Although all of the actors are quite good, Jeremy Irons is fantastic. He has the quiet and controlled menace of a man whose past has been stolen and his life irretrievably changed because of it. While I wish the film hadnít had an ending that was so open to interpretation, I really enjoyed the film a lot.