Me Before You (2016)

Game of Thrones. The Hunger Games. Harry Potter. Downton Abbey. Doctor Who.

For the most part, these are some of the greatest franchises of the modern day. You don’t even have to like them to acknowledge the voracity with which people consume those tales.

You would think, given that Me Before You contains fan-favorite actors and actresses from these series, that it would be an instant classic. I was hoping that would be the case, but (very) sadly, I was wrong.

I just read the book this week, and I was expecting to weep at the ending. When I did not, I hoped I would cry in the movie–it’s a matter of pride for me, sobbing in a theater. While watching this film, I got a few lumps in my throat, but I swallowed them with ease.

The film revolves around Louisa Clark (Emilia Clarke), who desperately takes a job as a caregiver for Will Traynor (Sam Claflin), a quadriplegic who used to live grandly. He’s a bitter chap now, but over time, they soften each other up. It’s truly endearing, sometimes too much so, and yet it’s often frustrating. Will has been planning something big, and nothing that Louisa does can make him change his mind. He’s so… he’s so stubborn. The story wouldn’t be the same if he were different, though, and so there’s not much to be done.

I really wish I cried during this film. I took a pack of Kleenex I scavenged from my bookbag, and I was waiting to use them. But when you’re prepared for the worst, I’ve found, it never happens. I didn’t cry, and I’m disappointed in myself.

The film is very standard, a sum of parts that are too great to amount to anything better. Do watch it for Clark(e), though. She’s such a beam of sunshine in this film, you almost believe the rain will never come. Okay? Okay.


Me Before You is in theaters now.

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