Me before you Movie Review

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Updated: Apr 29, 2022
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Me before you Movie Review essay

This movie was adapted from a novel written by Jojo Moyes. “Me Before you” is a romance movie that brings two different people who have absolutely nothing in common. At the center of this plot, it is an emotional debate about attempting medical suicide, it’s about finding courage to hold onto something even when there is nothing to hold on to. Louisa Clark is one of the main protagonists in the movie; Louisa a bright and cheerful girl, after the café she works closes she went out seeking a job that’s when she met the Traynor Family. The Traynor family was looking for a caregiver for their son William Traynor. William is the second main character of the movie and the book as well. William’s character is an antagonist. The major conflict throughout the plot both in the novel and in the movie is between William and anyone who loves him especially Louisa Clark regarding his decision to commit medically assisted suicide.

William used to be an energetic, outgoing man until he got into a motorcycle accident when he was in hid mid 20’s. He was devastated when he found out that he was paralyzed from the neck down. In his eyes, the motorcycle cost him his old life and freedom to do things he used to do by himself. Tired of the pain his going through, William tells his parents that he would like to see a doctor that will accept his request to go through the medical suicide. His parents were against his decision till William almost took his own life, that’s when they ultimately agreed; with all that’s going on his parents asked him to give them at least six months before attempting the medical suicide, William agreed on that condition. That’s when William’s mother Camilla Traynor hires a second caregiver Louisa, to take care of William. Louisa is affable but has no experience in the caregiving field. Regardless of her not having any experience in the caregiving field, she got the job. Louisa was never informed in the movie by Will’s parents that her job was to make sure that he doesn’t kill himself. She finds out after overhearing a conversation between Mr. and Ms. Traynor.

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The Movie “Me before you” has a slight difference from the novel that was adapted from, as all adaptations do. Both the original book and the screenplay was written by Jojo Moyes. Even though most of the dialogue and the main plot of the story are the same, and most of the change was by eliminating small details in order to maintain the sub-two-hour movie, they kept the story plot and everything the same. One of the eliminations from the book was when Louisa had a panic attack in the maze and confesses to William, that she was raped in the maze when she was younger. In the book, she doesn’t spell out what happened but her action leads William to figure out what exactly happened to her. This was a very important part in the novel, but this storyline wasn’t in the movie, even if the producers tired their best to fit in this scene they couldn’t as it goes off the topic and is distracting visually, “you can’t throw that away and not be respectful to the issue. So, we tried and tried but the subject deserves unbalanced the whole film” [Angela]. The second cutting was William’s father Stephen Traynor’s affair. In the book, William’s father has an affair with a red-headed mistress and was planning to divorce William’s mother Camilla Traynor. In the book, Louisa spots Mr. Traynor with another woman. When she tells William that she saw his father with another woman, he was unsurprised. Regardless of the story in the novel, in the movie, William’s parents come across as a pretty strong couple in the movie version.

Although his family disagrees at William decision at first, they put on a united front for his sake. One of his supporters in the book was William’s sister Georgina Traynor. In the book, Georgina was the actual person who informed Louisa about William’s plain to go through a medical suicide. Even though she supports him in every way possible she was against him on his decision to attempt medical suicide and yells at him, “Has it ever occurred to you, Will that, believe it or not, this might not be just about you?” [Moyes,143]. Although she had a big role in the book, she still wasn’t referred to in the movie, her character was cut out as her character was not a developing character. Another important story-line that was cut from the book was Louisa’s ex-boyfriend Patrick, doesn’t tell the press about William’s plan to attempt assisted suicide. Even though Patrick jealousy and male bravado are included in the movie, Patrick doesn’t go a far to tell the press about his ex-girlfriends’ new man.

The perspectives of other characters aren’t given in the movie. In the book the story is not only told from Louisa’s perspective, all the characters told their point of view’s. An example from Will’s mother Camilla Traynor’s chapter: “I took at William and I saw the baby I held in my arms… I had created another human being…] [Moyes,109]. Her point of view towards Williams decision to attempt the assisted suicide was seen in the book briefly than the movie. Another minor difference is Louisa doesn’t say I love you in the film as she does in the book. In the book, Louisa tells William she loves him: “I know there are all sorts of reasons I shouldn’t even be saying this, but I love you.” [Moyes, 241]. In fact, it’s been referred several times throughout the book; but she doesn’t actually say the love word in the movie, although her feelings for him is crystal clear. In the movie even though William’s time on this plant may be limited, serving up a bitter-sweet storyline in which Louisa lights up his dwindling days, and they captured the lighting and the camera angle perfectly in my point of view.

The movie was so true to the novel; It’s structuring how similar it was to the movie. A lot of dialogue was pretty much word for word. Although it’s the same story, it makes more sense in the book as Louisa has a richer character in the book, she’s much better explained. While all love stories have their own ups and downs of course “Me before you” has its fair share of it. There is so much to love about this story-line, from Louisa chattiness and ridiculous dresses and William’s smirks. One of the similarities was the dance floor scene at William’s ex’s- girlfriend’s wedding. Louisa’s has too many cocktails and jumps into Will’s lap to give the people at the wedding saying “…let’s give them something to talk about”, are they all appalled” (Moyes, 56) asks William smiling as he wheels them around the dance floor. Louisa and William then Started disusing how they would never be dancing together or for that matter talks to each other if he wasn’t in a wheelchair. Louisa says that he never would have looked at her if it was before his accident and she cracked a joke by saying that she would have been a server at this wedding. Then Will admits that he was a jerk in his pre-motorcycle accident life. Then, he gets serious “Do you know something Clark? You are pretty much the only thing that makes me want to get up in the morning” (Moyes 58). This scene was the same as the original work and was the start of William’s and Louisa’s romance and plays an important part to the story.

Both the original and the adapted movie involves Louisa planning a trip for William before he attempts medical suicide. Even though William is an emotionally combative man whom Louisa did not want to work for at first; Louisa and William start to bond over the stories that they shared. That is when Louisa began thinking of ways to help him have a great life regardless of him being paralyzed. At first, she began taking him to short outings in the U.K, then they started traveling outside of the U.K. Over time the two grew closer. William always encouraged Louisa to lead the adventurous life that he was unable to lead anymore. Both on the movie and original, William and Louisa took a trip to Mauritius, Louisa confessed to Will that she was in love with him and that they could have a life together if he gave it a chance not to attempt a medical suicide. William responded by telling her no and assured her that he wouldn’t change his mind about seeing the doctor to end his pain. Louisa returned heartbroken from the trip. Despite that, Louisa went to see William the day before he was going to visit his doctor to end his life. They agree that the past six months have been the happiest days of their lives.

After William became wheelchaired bound in the motor accident, his whole world changes dramatically in the blink of an eye. No longer the adventurous soul he once was, he give up on life. This is until Louisa determines to show him that life is worth living. Unlike the book, the film doesn’t discuss the larger “right to die” argument. Although in the book Louisa joins a chatroom with people who are disabled and can’t do things by themselves, to figure out how to better help William and possibly, convince him not to attempt medical suicide. She finds people questioning whether she has a right to play a role in William’s decision. Although these characters are unnamed and do not play a large part in the story, they fundamentally alter the story’s discussion of a much serious topic. Because the movie leaves out those stories, however minor they are, it simplifies the issue in a way that many have found offensive and harmful to the disabled community. Regardless, Louisa and William embarked together on a series of adventures of their lives, changing in ways neither one could have imagined. The audience view of “Me Before you” regarding William’s choice to take his own life, some say it is presented not as a selfish and cowardly but as sacrificial and brave move. “we’re supposed to applaud his willingness to spare the women who loves him of caring for him” [Angela, 2]. Even though most viewers disagree with William’s choice to processed with his medical suicide there are few who thinks that his decision was not out of selfishness.

Overall “Me Before You” is incredibly easy to engage with both on the novel and on the screen. With two beautifully crafted lead characters. Louisa and William are a joy to follow and it is their chemistry that made this novel and film amazing. It is most definitely one of the best novel and film; the story is set in a very real, not over-sweetened but also not over the dramatized way. “Me Before you”, is a great movie especially in this era of amazing computer-generated special effects, it’s easy to make an audience believe that a man can fly or that giant alien spaceships can show up around the globe. But it’s far more difficult to make an audience believe the two people have fallen in love. “Me Before you, 3.5 stars: Emilia Clarke (Lou) and Sam Claflin (Will) accomplished in the big-screen adaptation of Jojo Moyes’ best-selling book.” [Angela, 2]. The film could have become entangled in deep political and philosophical discussion about how precious life is even when circumstances change so dramatically, the film comes down to one very human decision. 

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Me Before You Movie Review. (2022, Apr 29). Retrieved from