When you find yourself still chewing on/smiling about/ranting about a certain movie a week after watching it, it’s probably a good sign that you need to write a review.
So, here you guys go. -bows-
Me Before You: Movie Review
Young and quirky Louisa “Lou” Clark (Emilia Clarke) moves from one job to the next to help her family make ends meet. Her cheerful attitude is put to the test when she becomes a caregiver for Will Traynor (Sam Claflin), a wealthy young banker left paralyzed from an accident two years earlier. Will’s cynical outlook starts to change when Louisa shows him that life is worth living. As their bond deepens, their lives and hearts change in ways neither one could have imagined.
Good stuff/The Raves:
Okay, I’ve made it pretty clear by now that I’m a definite “character person” as far as stories go. So if the characters catch my attention, I’m sold, man.
And I’ll tell you right here that I absolutely loved the characters here. Louisa was so bouncy and random and her optimism was so wonderful. And Will . . . I loved Will and his dry humor and eyebrow-raising. He had a great character arc from the beginning super-rudeness (while that was funny to watch as well, honestly) to actually caring for Louisa. ❤
It was another nice element how well-rounded a lot of the minor characters were as well. Nathan, the medical-nurse dude, was really nice and chill compared to Lou and Will’s extremes. The Traynor and Clark families didn’t have too much screentime, but they were well represented as human beings, not cardboard cutouts as well.
Patrick, Lou’s actual boyfriend, was sorta “meh” on character development. Or maybe that’s just because he was really like the only guy I didn’t like in that. XD
Even if I’m a character person . . . who can pass up a cool concept, honestly? So this movie kind of pulled me in on both fronts there.
Just having a bouncy fluffball of a girl be tasked with caring for a quadriplegic grump and cheer him up?
That, my friends, is not your typical romance movie.
And they worked it really well. Not just “eh, okay so he’s in a wheelchair and he can’t move”, but not glossing over or cheating on what all quadriplegia entails. I learned some stuff I didn’t know before. (And honestly, I’m very, very happy and grateful for the use of my arms and legs now. More than before, certainly. –nodnod-)
I really like laughing.
Movies that make me laugh automatically earn points in my book.
And this one did that quite a lot.
It’s nice because the purpose/concept in and of itself isn’t humor, but with the character interactions, expressions and situations, humor just flows really naturally out of the thing itself. There’s even just happy-laughing, which is always wonderful.
There were some really cool and distinct places here. A cool castle, a cozy home, the wheelchair annex and a tropical island to name a few of them. And just the way the story jumped around between all of them was really cool and I liked having pretty things for my eyes to behold while watching.
- Sweet romance
I don’t inherently like romance, honestly. I’m usually the person that sees the romantic subplot slowly coming to surface and rolls my eyes and groans. I’d rather see the whole “rah-rah fight the bad guys with super cool gadgets” sort of movies. So it takes work for me to like a romance for itself.
And I really, really did like this romance. It was so sweet the way Will and Lou interact and went from borderline enemies/barely being civil to each other to slowly loving each other. They still kept the teasing and snarking at each other as well so, all the better. ❤
So -approval from a normally non-romance person-
Okay, something I sort of appreciated outside of the movie itself, but I listened to the soundtrack while I was writing –cough- some stuff that you’ll see later –cough- and they have some pretty fun songs and a good score in there, so that’s always nice.
- Sam Claflin in action (sort of. I mean… wheelchair action but still.)
I’m biased, sorry. This is a tiny little “hi, my guilty pleasure” reason here, so this has nothing whatsoever to do with the quality.
I’ve only watched little interview clips/gifs/pictures and such, but the face and partial inspiration I’ve been using for my main character (Wolfgang Dankworth) for the past year has been Sam Claflin.
And then to see him in a movie where he’s playing a character whose personality is actually pretty similar to my character. . . it just made me grin a lot while I was watching it. It was great to see how well all the facial expressions and stuff fit.
It was just something I took great joy in. ❤
Bad Stuff/The Rants:
I’ve been told the book was much worse, so this was a cleaner version. But there were still some language spots. I wouldn’t say it was anything extremely serious, but . . . yeah, it was there.
- Inappropriate/suggestive things
This certainly earned it the PG-13 rating. There weren’t any long, drawn-out conversations on inappropriate topics, but there were wince spots of people just “oh yeah and sex” and it had me cringing.
Plus it starts out like the first minute of a girl and a boy in bed together so . . . –cringe-
This is the huge, looming, black stormcloud of “BUUUT” over this whole review.
The ending was absolutely terrible. In so, so many ways.
I loved the movie up to about fifteen minutes before the end.
–spoilers lie ahead, but I think you folks deserve to know-
So the whole theme . . . the whole character arc . . . the freaking story goal . . . is centered around that Will thinks there’s nothing left to live for so he’s going to commit medically assisted suicide. Louisa is trying to convince him out of it.
There’s a lovely buildup and much tossing around with the abstract concepts of “There’s always hope” and “Live your life” and “Care for others and love them”. The whole movie tagline is “Live boldly.”
It all flops. Will kills himself in the end anyway, and it’s set up as a good thing.
So, suicide = good thing if that’s what you choose, even if you still have lots of people around who love you and want you to stay. I mean, if you think so man, it’s your choice . . .
Totally fits with that whole “live your life boldly” theme, right? Wonderful ending for this adorable couple that shows that people in wheelchairs are still able to live life. Kill the guy in the wheelchair. Makes perfect sense.
Not to mention just how badly written the ending was, on a basic level of writing.
Louisa was just super mad at Will for wanting to leave her, and then all of a sudden, she’s totally chill and calm with him just lying there waiting to die and only briefly jokes about “kidnapping him away”.
And Will pretty much thought he’d chased Lou away and she wasn’t talking to him and hated his guts. And then all of a sudden “oh lookie she followed me to Switzerland” and he’s not surprised. Just a “hey guys, Lou’s here”.
Plus the fact that it’s . . . um . . . not the impulsive five-minute-drive to Switzerland from England that they made it look like?
That ending was like . . . everyone just gave up on trying or handed the plotting over to a beginning fanfic writer.
Okay, I know this sort of stuff can and does happen in real life. But please, show me how it can end happily. Show me the ending that was meant to be, not just the cruel, tear-jerking, suicide promoting ending. Carry through with the theme and show that disabled people have a right and a duty to live as well, please.
It just made me so mad because they had SO MUCH POTENTIAL and SUCH GREAT CHARACTERS. And it was WASTED.
Sink my hard-won ship, will you.
Thanks a heap, guys. -_-
I have really mixed feelings about this movie. I loved the first ¾ to tiny pieces, and then I hate the last ¼’s guts.
I’m glad I watched it just for the joy and fun of the majority of the movie.
Bad message, definitely, though. Huge no-no. The ending makes me very mad.
BUT SO -claps hands together- you know what that means, guys? I got so riled up I went and rewrote the ending. And you’ll be getting that tomorrow, so maybe those of you who’ve seen it/will see it can have your minds at ease with a happy ending.
Anyway, it’s honestly any of your guys’s choice on whether you watch that or not. Hopefully I presented my mixed-up feelings on this well enough to fully present both sides of the case well.
Have you seen Me Before You? What movies jumbled your brain up on what you thought of them?
See ya next time,
P.S. some promotion here for a friend who did a great write-up for what all was wrong with the ending a.k.a. more rants if I didn’t sate your appetite on that front. Writing Controversial Endings: Me Before You