Me Before You- Book vs. Movie Review

For the past couple years I have learned to ignore the idiotic and biased “critiques” that come from the well-known Rotten Tomatoes website. The critics that end up with their reviews on the site seem to have specific taste in movies and if a certain film does not match that taste then, by their specifications, the movie is garbage.

This has fully prompted me into writing my Book vs. Movie Review for Me Before You. I went to see this film, after having read the book in May, with my lovely husband, three of my good friends, and one of my friends’ mom and sister. Two of my friends had a difficult time not shedding tears or blubbering throughout points in the film. But Rotten Tomatoes wants to say it was a blubbering mess. Well, yeah that’s the point.

SPOILERS!!! Do not read this if you have not read the book or watched the film. If you have done neither then go to Amazon and get the book. Do it. Right now.

If you want to read their “reviews” of the movie then click the link here, if you dare.

Anyway, I could rant about those people for days so we must move on.

I don’t normally go see movies like this (romantic or little action) in theaters because I feel like they are best for sitting at home and enjoying with made-at-home popcorn and snuggles :). But I had to go see it because I couldn’t wait.

 Story line

The Movie

The movie follows the book timeline well. There are bits throughout the movie that are sped up or shortened, in a sense, to make up for movie time but I think that is something that we will just have to expect when it comes to book-to-movie adaptations. However, I didn’t feel like I lost anything from the bits that were shortened or sped up. The story still held itself together and the audience gets to feel and see everything (mostly) that was included in the book. I know that they did this well enough because the people who failed to read the book beforehand wanted to desperately after watching the movie. Kudos movie people, you have potentially turned your audience into book readers (maybe).

The Book

I wasn’t sure I was going to like this book. No, honestly I really wasn’t sure. I had read reviews and had seen the trailer and I knew I had to see the mushiness of it but wasn’t sure if the book would be as sappy as what I was hoping it would be. It was better. I got to know Lou on a level that some authors don’t establish between reader and character. I fell in love with her personality, her silliness, and her absolute unique personality. I would want her to be my friend if she were real. Oh and let’s not even go down the Will Traynor road. Okay, I have to! For a man who is handicapped, Moyes was able to create a hell of a character. Remember how all crazed the teenagers got over Edward in Twilight (I know more Twilight references)? Okay, Will Traynor is about on the same level of jerk-hawt-guy, but he is HANDICAPPED. Handicapped, people, and Moyes was still able to make him be sexy. Okay I gotta stop or my husband will get jealous over a handicapped fictional dude.

Characters/Actors

The Movie

The movie missed a great opportunity to show us more of Treena (Lou’s sister played by Jenna Coleman), Lou’s parents (Samantha Spiro and Brendan Coyle), and Patrick (Lou’s boyfriend who is played by Matthew Lewis). I think that they spent a lot more time on the Main Character’s (rightly so) than showing us the side characters. I personally would have liked to see the established Treena that we meet in the book (and to see more of Jenna Coleman) as well as seeing more of Patrick (Matthew Lewis is so grown up now!!). They missed some drama points by having those two characters’ stories not be as much of a focal point for Lou as it is in the book. I mean she makes some of her decisions around those people because of what they’ve done or said to her. Overall, the two MCs were fantastic and beautifully cast. Props to the movie genies for making those decisions. The cast in general was spot on.

What was added/taken out? 

There were several so I think bullet points are necessary here.

  • Patrick and Lou moving in together
  • Lou’s small bedroom
  • Lou moving into the big bedroom when Treena moves out
  • The severity of Lou’s parents lack of money
  • Lou’s grandfather
  • More reasons why the cafe job was such a loss for her (customers, atmosphere, etc.)
  • Patrick and Lou’s relationship overall seemed to be undermined to give her the full justification for leaving him
  • The happenings in the maze
  • Their first kiss didn’t happen in the book like they presented it in the film
  • The cover is a lie. She wore a blue dress when she sat on his lap at the wedding, although in the book she wore the red one. Lies.

I think that is pretty much all of them. I would have to re-watch the film in order to catch all the little details missed between movie and book. I mentioned these specifically because I think that they would have added more depth to the characters and given the audience more insight into who Lou is and why she made the decisions she made. Also, the relationships between her sister and Patrick were severely  underdeveloped. The audience does not get the full picture or all of the answers and that makes me sad.

Justice

Did the Book to Movie adaptation do the book justice? Yes, I believe they did a good job with the movie. As mentioned above I would have liked to see more development and explanations but it is okay, I understand that films can’t all be five hours long to give me the full picture that the book gave me. I also know that the book will always be vastly superior than any film could ever be. I enjoy watching the movies, though, because my imagination can only go so far.

Bonus!

If you have made it this far then I applause you. I MUST add this! The moment where they are celebrating her birthday and Patrick’s gift is so un-Lou like and then she opens Will’s gift. Oh. Em. Gee. Most perfect moment ever! She reacted brilliantly at that point. It gave me the feels and everyone in the theater laughed and probably cried a little too. Wow. What a great moment to capture on screen.

So long and thanks for all the fish!

So that is all I have for you today! I plan on writing more of these and have a couple that won’t be as congratulatory! Hope you enjoyed it!

Star Wars


I have to start this post with the fact that there will be spoilers ahead (duh). So, if you happen to be any one of those weirdos who haven’t seen Star Wars: The Force Awakens, then do not continue.

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What are you waiting for?

I am not going to critique this movie (there might be a bit) and I am not going to rank it.
I am going to write about how this movie made me feel and what I think about the story.

Storyline: The story takes place thirty years after the events of Return of the Jedi. Luke Skywalker has gone missing, the First Order (the remnants of the Galactic Empire) has placed fear in people, and Kylo Ren is a dark deusch. The story begins with the audience meeting several new characters such as: BB8 (second most awesome droid ever), Poe (awesome pilot dude), Finn (stormtrooper turn good dude), and Rey (obvious unknowing Jedi chick).

Let’s get away from the icky details now.

The story shares the feelings of the old Star Wars films, not the prequels (ick) but the old ones. I felt as though I was living inside of the Star Wars universe again even from the very beginning.

I know a lot of fans don’t like change and don’t like to see old characters go or new ones coming in. However, in this case I feel like it is necessary for this series and appropriate in the way they introduce them. I don’t feel like I am getting gypped by saying goodbye to beloved characters. Speaking of which, when you-know-what happened I bawled like a five-year-old whose popsicle was taken from her. Seriously, it was an ugly cry, with the clenching of the husband’s hand, and my left hand covering my mouth so I didn’t scream in anguish.

The storyline made me cry from happiness and cry from sadness. I felt hope, loss, and dreamy at times. It was a roller coaster of emotions throughout the entire film that made me not want to get up and leave the theatre because I was sad to see it end.

I just watched it again last night and I could go for another movie night already.

Actors: We were able to see our favorite characters and actors come back to the Star Wars world once again in The Force Awakens. Which is a great feeling. We were also introduced to several new faces. The most prominent being: Kylo Ren (Adam Driver), Rey (Daisy Ridley), Finn (John Boyega), and Poe (Oscar Isaac).
Everyone did a fantastic job portraying their characters and bringing them to life.
I don’t like Ren’s face so much (sorry Adam Driver). He is a bit more nerdy/punk than I would have pictured him to be (and too skinny. Bulk up!). His acting, the mask, and his lightsaber were pretty epic though.

The lightsaber looks unstable with its main saber spike and the two smaller ones coming out of the sides at the bottom of the hilt. I feel like it symbolizes the instability in his personality. My husband mentioned that Ren is like, “Anakin in his adolescent impulsive behavior, except Ren isn’t boner-happy.”

Star-Wars-Force-Awakens-Kylo-Ren

For bringing in newbies to the franchise I feel like each one of them did justice to their characters and impacted the movie in a positive way.

Comparisons: The Force Awakens tried really hard to add in Han and Chewie moments (daw moments) throughout the movie. I am not complaining. One of those moments ended up looking a lot like a moment we have seen before. The moment where Han, and Chewie are surrendering to The First Order looks an awful like when they surrendered to The Imperial Troops back in The Return of the Jedi. I believe these types of moments (like finding The Millennium Falcon together) are foreshadowing later events. *Cries*
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The Force Awakens did a good job of being its own movie. There are times when sequels try too hard to be like its first installment (and third), that the movie falls flat. Not the case here.

The Death Star Starkiller Base is not like any big, bad, evil, round ship the audience has ever seen…. Ever. It is even mentioned in the movie by one of the resistance characters that the Starkiller Base is not, “another Death Star.” Pretty sure a lot of fans would disagree with that statement. However, the Starkiller Base is pretty gnarly in terms of bad guy hangouts.

My favorite part: This is a toughy. I held my husband’s hand tightly as those familiar yellow lines moved before my eyes. Another husband-hand-clenching moment was when we first get to see Han and Chewie for the first time since the early 1980s (I didn’t exist so it has been less time, for me, than that).
But what is my favorite part of the whole movie?

BB8. BB8 is my favorite. I have always been a huge fan of R2-D2 and BB8 is just right behind.

When Finn comes across Rey beating the living sh*t out of a couple henchman and after the fight BB8 sees Finn and is like, “Hey nice lady, that dude over there is wearing the jacket of my bestest friend!!!” So she chases after Finn, catches him, and BB8 comes flying next to Finn on the ground and zaps him a few times…. Ah, I love it when droids cause pain to the characters.

Conclusion: First off you need to go watch this movie.

The storyline stands out from all of the previous Star Wars films (knocks the prequels out of the water).

The actors bring in a refreshing feel to the film.

There are moments where you will find yourself thinking, “I have seen this before.” Or, “This looks like _____ when _____ did ____.” It happens. Let it be a good thing.

BB8 is amazeballs.

Thank you all so much for reading!

Props to the husband for helping me with this project and letting me quote him. Love you!