When it comes to movies like this I think the important question is not “Was it good?” but “Did you cry?”. I did.
The movie reminded me of 50/50 (which I have not reviewed I just realised!) and A Walk to Remember. It was like that but not quite. The movie starts with Enoch who goes around crashing people’s funerals. In one he meets a girl named Annabel Cotton who confronts him knowing that he does not know the deceased. Enoch runs off but bumps into her again, a few funerals later. Annabel had decided to crash that funeral too and ends up befriending him. The story runs along from there.
As you may have guessed by now,Mia Wasikowska’s character is dying. She only has three months to live and together they decide to make the rest of her days the best possible. I know, it sounds sappy but it isn’t. There are many scenes which are more than real; Enoch taking Annabel to see his parents (I won’t spoil that) and Annabel wanting to meet his friend Yoshi (another thing I won’t spoil).
The writer, Jason Lew did a good job in keeping with the flow of the movie. There is point when Enoch decides that he can’t take being with a girl who’s about to die and those scenes where he completely cracks are well acted out by Henry Hopper. Mia Wasikowska does a good job as Annabel in the silent moments where she simply ‘looks’.
There is this scene where Annabel talks about giving her body to science; Enoch reacts badly calling it ‘disgusting’ as people would be cutting up her body and putting parts in jars and in petri dishes. She continues on about how she ‘would like to have her eyes in a jar’ and asks him if he would come to visit them. The agony in Enoch’s face and the affirmation that he would was portrayed so well.
The movie ends of course, with Annabel’s passing. I didn’t cry until that one part at the end. No, there wasn’t a long moment in a hospital or by her bedside. It was a sweet departing , subtle in someways yet screaming volumes. I cried then. It was kind of unexpected and so beautifully written in. It felt like a punch you didn’t see coming, leaving a sort of shock, well, to me at least. The movie ends much like A Walk to Remember. No tearful moments between the couple but a quiet one, a celebration of Annabel’s life.
I’ve actually been avoiding watching this movie. I heard about it and read about it but I didnt’ want to cry. Today I felt like I was strong enough and wanted a bit of a distraction. I got it. It’s a movie that people who liked A Walk to Remember or 50/50 or Never Let Me Go would enjoy. It’s not dramatic and has nothing flamboyant. It’s real life presented as it is.