Movie review of “Me Before You”: The film adaptation of Jojo Moyes’ “Me Before You” is sweet, but its pop soundtrack distracts. Rating: 2.5 stars out of 4.
The Princess Leia buns and eclectic outfits Jojo Moyes wrote for Louisa “Lou” Clark in her novel “Me Before You” don’t disappoint on screen. Lou (Emilia Clarke) is decked out in her black-and-white furry striped coat, dresses patterned with butterflies and vegetables, and a wild collection of brightly colored tights and shoes that resemble the bouquet of multicolored daisies she holds in one scene.
Twenty-six-year-old Lou, who lives in a picturesque British tourist town, becomes a caretaker for Will Traynor (Sam Claflin), a wealthy local 30-something who’s paralyzed from the neck down. Will’s cynical sense of humor and outright rudeness doesn’t faze Lou; soon, the two seem to be in love, with Lou determined to convince Will (who is contemplating assisted suicide) to keep on living. Unfortunately, the story makes it seem as if Will, because of his disability, has no reason to keep living aside from maybe Lou’s antics.
The screenplay, of which Moyes is a co-writer, doesn’t deviate far from the popular novel. Under Thea Sharrock’s direction, Clarke’s Lou is as adorable, clumsy and endearing as her portrayal in the book, and Claflin’s sarcasm provides a few necessary moments of comic relief.
Movie Review ★★½
‘Me Before You,’ with Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin, Janet McTeer, Charles Dance, Matthew Lewis, Stephen Peacocke. Directed by Thea Sharrock, from a screenplay by Jojo Moyes, based on Moyes’ novel. 110 minutes. Rated PG-13 for thematic elements and some suggestive material. Several theaters.
If you’re hoping to leave the theater happy, well … think “The Fault in Our Stars,” plus 10 years and less chemistry. Overall, the film is sweet but often loses impact in its most serious moments by blasting a happy pop soundtrack. Who wants to listen to Ed Sheeran while watching someone contemplate mortality?
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