Everything, Everything            review by Drusilla Blakey

There are always films that come along that are in that middle ground of drama and romance. More often than not they end up with mixed results depending on the direction they ultimately decide to try to go and the demographic they are reaching out to. The latest, Everything, Everything starring Amandla Stenberg and Nick Robinson, but does it have that something special to help it step out on its own or should it have stayed in the house?

 

Everything, Everything follows 18-year-old Maddy who lives an isolated life indoors due to a terrible illness.  She has never left her house and views the world as a quiet observer.  One day, she observes new neighbors moving in next door and her heart is immediately captivated by the family’s handsome teenage son. As I sat down to watch the film, I was doubtful that I would be as captivated as Maddy, but since the little neighbor boy was kind of cute, I thought I would give it a try. ;)  And, I’m glad I did because I really ended up enjoying this movie more than I thought possible! The story of star crossed lovers is not new however, this take on ‘what is keeping them apart’ is.  Normally, we have parents, old lovers, long distances, etc. separating our main characters.  But this time, we have an illness that is keeping our main character from being with the boy of her dreams, Olly.

 

Due to her not being able to leave the house, an amazing form of communication begins to emerge.  With technology playing a part in the background, the audience is led on a journey of imagination!  What’s that, you say?  Well your imagination is something some of us “older” people grew up with as we did not have internet, cell phones and sometimes not even access to 24 hours of television.  You may be shocked right now to find out that your parents grew up in such a horrible way, but our imagination was our friend and constant companion.  And in this movie, it is front and center during a lot of the conversations held by Maddy and Olly.  As they communicate via text, they imagine that they are actually sitting together talking, like normal people used to do.  Soon, you start to forget that they are not actually together; until someone says something funny like “type faster!”

 

I found this creative way of filming and storytelling to be very captivating and fresh.  Additionally, the performances of both Amandla Stenberg (Maddy) and Nick Robinson (Olly) are so pure and true to a teen perspective of first love.  There are times in the movie when you are allowed to see their inner thoughts and like so many of us, they are speaking but thinking “I probably sound stupid right now”, or “I should have worn something nicer”.  All the same thoughts we have all had when trying to make a good impression on someone. As the story moves forward and Maddy bravely decides to leave the safety of her house, their love story really begins to take shape and unfold.  But of course, we know there are going to be consequences, and this is exactly why you should watch this movie – to find out what happens next.  Let me just say, there are some shockers coming your way.

 

Both teens and adults will enjoy this sweet and special love story.  Rated PG-13, it’s great for everyone! Grab your copy of Everything Everything available now on Blu-ray and DVD from Warner Bros. Home Entertainment.

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