Cast: Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin, Charles Dance, Janet McTeer, Jenna Coleman, Matthew Lewis, Stephen Peacocke
Director: Thea Sharrock
Length and Rating: 110 min | PG-13
With all the superhero movies being released recently, Me Before You attempts to get people to go to the theatre for something other than grown men in capes. Louisa Clark (Emilia Clarke, Games of Thrones) has lived her whole life in the same town and has been at the same job for years. But when she is forced to find new employment she lands herself a job as a caregiver to Will Trainor (Sam Claflin, Hunger Games: Catching Fire), a quadriplegic who is adjusting to his new life predicament, poorly.
It classic girl meets boy, boy dislikes girl, girl dislikes boy, girl begins to like boy, boy has given himself 6 months to live… wait a minute. Yes, Will has given himself and family a specific length of time he would like to remain on earth before he goes to a medical facility that will help him commit suicide. You won’t find that in your superhero movie.
This is not a Nicholas Sparks film, although you would be forgiven if you thought so. This film is funnier than a Nicholas Sparks film, surprising funny. It actually has you both laughing and crying if you let yourself get swept up in the story. Emilia Clarke, a.k.a. Queen of Dragons, plays quirky Lou without making her seem over the top and unbearably happy. She in fact has most of the funny lines in the film, giving the girl who wears the outlandish outfits some substance. With Sam Claflin, who we have seen play charming in the Hunger Games franchise, as her counterpart the two have some chemistry. And it’s not an instance romance with is refreshing, as each character becomes for comfortable around one another that’s when the relationship between the two changes gradually until you realize they are in love with one another.
What may lose some people is the subject matter of doctor-assisted suicide, which is a factor in this film. Since his accident Will feels likes this is not his life anymore, and he is not the same person. He was meant to have a different life, and that life ended for him when his accident happened. Whether you think what he wants to do is morally right or wrong is up to you to decide. Now is this the film to have a serious debate on doctor-assisted suicide, maybe but probably not. But the ultimate goal of the movie seems to be to encourage fullness of life, and as the film’s tagline suggests, to live boldly.
FAVOURITE QUOTE: “You only get one life. It’s actually your duty to live it as fully as possible.” – Will Trainor (Sam Claflin)