While I finish up the reviews of the The Survivor’s Guide to Family Happiness by Maddie Dawson and In Twenty Years by Allison Winn Scotch, I thought I’d finally post my thoughts on the book to screen adaptation of Me Before You by Jojo Moyes.
I’ve finally seen the movie adaptation of Jojo Moyes amazing novel, “Me Before You.”
To begin, it is perfectly cast. Emilia Clarke as the bubbly, hopeful, and vulnerable Louisa Clark: no one else could have done it as well. She is a compassionate, loving girl, whose family depends on her financially, and Clarke did a great job of showing the burden she carried but does so because she loves her family so much. She captured her essence, a plain girl, happy in her quiet life, because she is content with her boyfriend that she likes well enough, but basically has no life outside of her family and home.
Jojo Moyes admitted that she had only known Emilia Clarke from her work on the insanely popular “Game Of Thrones” (author’s note: I am one of the few who have not jumped on the bandwagon and watched it. *GASP* I know, I will someday.) However, once she met her and Emilia read for Louisa, she could not imagine a more perfect actress to play her.
Then there’s Sam Claflin as Will Traynor. He played the delicate balance of being pretentious yet terribly embarrassed of his current condition amazingly well. He really dug in and got into Will’s head and I’ve seen most of Sam’s films (Love, Rosie, Hunger Games, The Riot Club) and I’m glad they gave him the chance to play a character that wasn’t instantly likable. As the film progressed, you began to understand Will’s reasons for his decision and unlike a lot of the viewers, I understood why he had to do it. The author of the book was inspired by the story of a Rugby player who ultimately made the same choice as Will, and wanted to explore the psychology of it, and the book and film did so brilliantly. A lot of people have a hard time accepting his decision, but *SPOILER* Will’s precarious health problems had him facing death constantly, and he comes close at one point in the film due to a bout a pneumonia. Instead of dying of something painful and having to live in such severe pain and depression, he chose to die peacefully surrounded by his loved ones.
They did leave out some of the smaller story lines such as Louisa’s rape that led to her fashion choices (wisely, in my opinion), Louisa’s sister Treena and her illegitimate son Tom (only shown briefly) and her leaving for college which made it impossible for Louisa to quit her job with Will because her family needed her salary even more. Louisa’s parents got a much smaller part also, but that’s to be expected. They were there for the important bits. Also, the back and forth between Louisa and her boyfriend Patrick, who she does move in with for a time but ultimately breaks up with because of his jealousy of her closeness to Will and her realization that she does not love him in the way she loves Will (I think it’s briefly mentioned but not as much as it is in the book). There was also a wise choice of leaving out the storyline of Mr. Traynor’s affair with a younger woman, and it’s implied that he had other affairs in the past and Mrs. Traynor knew but did nothing about it, presumably because she’s so wrapped up in Will’s situation. The last story line I think was cut out, and again wisely so, was Will’s sister Georgina. She had a small part in the book that really made no difference in the story line, and she wasn’t all that likable anyway.
So, there you have it! I loved the adaptation, and am so glad JoJo Moyes wrote the screenplay. I love when that is the case as it has been in other films like one of my favorite films, “The Perks Of Being A Wallflower” by Stephen Chbosky.
Even if you don’t agree with the whole concept of physician assisted suicide, it is a splendid film and love story. There is a sequel book, which I hope they make into a film because I loved Emilia Clarke in this role, but I guess I’ll have more on that when I read the book.
Coming soon later this week: A review of The Survivor’s Guide To Family Happiness by Maddie Dawson (and if I finish it) In Twenty Years by Allison Winn Scotch.