Sunday, 29 May 2016

Me Before You preview film review

IMDB says: A girl in a small town forms an unlikely bond with a recently-paralyzed man she's taking care of.

Thanks to Showfilmfirst, my daughter and I went to see a preview showing of Me Before You at the Leeds/Bradford Odeon this morning.

In this Thea Sharrock (The Hollow Crown, 'As You Like It' at Shakespeare's Globe Theatre) directed and Jojo Moyes (novel and screenplay) written film, Sam Claflin (Love, Rosie, Snow White and the Huntsman) stars at Will Traynor, a man who lived life to the full before his accident and Emilia Clarke (TVs Game of Thrones, Futurama) as Lou Clark, a generous woman who never thinks of herself, as his carer.

Will had everything before the accident, a job he loved with his best friend Rupert (Ben Lloyd-Hughes: Divergent, Insurgent), an active social life of extreme sports and a beautiful girlfriend, Alicia (Vanessa Kirby: About Time, Jupiter Ascending), but now he has a life he hates.  His parents, Camilla (Janet McTeer: Maleficent, Tumbleweeds) and Stephen (Charles Dance: The Imitation Game, Last Action Hero), have hired a full-time trainer Nathan (Stephen Peacocke: Hercules, TVs Home and Away) and adapted their home's annexe for their son but he is a shell of his former self.  Having hired carer after carer, who leave because of Will's behaviour, they had become desperate, but then, so is Lou.  Her parents, Bernard (Brendan Coyle: The Raven, TVs Downton Abbey) and Josie (Samantha Spiro: From Hell, TVs Bad Education), need her to have a job because they need the money, and her sister Katrina 'Treena' (Jenna Coleman: Captain America; The First Avenger, TVs Doctor Who) wants to go to Manchester University.


The compassionate Lou hates her new job to begin with, Will's inability to be nice, not having anything to do and knowing that he really doesn't want her there, but she perseveres and soon they broker an uneasy truce.  Her colourful taste in clothes and sunny personality begin to get under his skin and slowly he begins to show glimpses of the man he used to be, despite finding out that his ex-girlfriend and best friend have got engaged.

Following the awkwardness of attending the wedding and an uncomfortable birthday meal with her family, including grandad (Alan Breck: Sick, The Library) and her selfish boyfriend Patrick (Matthew Lewis: Harry Potter, TVs Happy Valley), Lou finds out that Will is planning to go to Dignitas in Switzerland once six months since the accident have passed, so she resolves to show Will what living life could really be like.

Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)

This is a beautiful little film, with deft emotional touches for such a controversial subject.  Lou is a joyous character, played with warmth by Clarke and though her scenes with Lewis make you want to scream at her to do something about his controlling behaviour in their relationship, you still want her to see it for herself and grow, both in terms of what she will say and do.  And although Will should be a despicable character because he is more selfish than Patrick, a sarcastic and sometimes cruel man, you know that he is the catalyst that she needs to start really living her life, not just following the wishes of everyone else. 

It is a lovely touch that her clothes reflect her personality and by the end of the film, you don't see the clashing colours and fussiness, because they are Lou and a perfect metaphor that she is sunshine in Will's drab world, the light to his dark and you know that this is what he sees too, even if he doesn't want to. 

Yes, this is a tearjerker as expected, but it is also full of warmth and heart.  At one point in the movie, Will asks 'Can I take you somewhere?' and this film did, it took us to somewhere real.


Trivia: This is Thea Sharrock's movie directorial debut, Clarke and Dance both star in TVs Game of Thrones but have never shared a scene together and Clarke convinced Lewis to shave his legs for the part.

Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)

#MeBeforeYou  #Showfilmfirst  #EmiliaClarke  #SamClaflin

Emilia Clarke in Me Before You (2016)

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