FILM REVIEW: IF I STAY (12A)

Kick-Ass’ Hit-Girl Chloe Grace Moretz gets her first major headlining vehicle in this passable romantic-drama – that just about cuts it as The Fault in Our Stars-lite.

She stars as quiet high school celloist Mia Hall, whose life is turned upside down after a  family drive on a snowy day turns into tragedy – and in an instant a serious car crash changes her entire existence.

She ends up in a coma, and during an out-of-body experience she must decide whether to wake up and live a life far different than ever imagined, with her Mum (World War Z’s Mireille Enos), Dad (The Blair Witch Project’s Joshua Leonard) and little brother Teddy, fighting for their lives alongside her.


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Via flashbacks we see the last eighteen months of her life up to the incident, which depicts Mia going through the hardest of all decisions – pursuing her musical dreams at renowned New York school Juilliard, or settling down with her rocker boyfriend Adam (Snow White and the Huntsman’s Jamie Blackley) who has turned into the love of her life.

While the film takes a while to get out of second gear – withthe interjection of choppy disjointed back-and-forth scenes giving it a sometimes amateurish feel – it does grow on you as Mia and Adam’s romance blossoms and stumbles.


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There’s a likeable companionship between Moretz and Blackley, and able support from Enos and Leonard as her enigmatic parents, and Liana Liberato as her best pal Kim, that helps it stay in the game through it’s flightier – but-trying-to-be-taken-seriously – moments.

Throw in a couple of emotional scenes towards the end – particularly by her Gramps (played by the legendary Stacy Keach) – and this does just about enough to be a noteworthy teen-romance-cum-drama box-ticker.

It doesn’t quite go deep enough to be anything that will truly linger in the memory for too long – and isn’t as clever as it thinks it is – but it’s worth the short cinema stay.

Visit www.showcasecinemas.co.uk for the latest up-to-date showtimes for Peterborough Showcase. You can also join the chat on Twitter @showcasecinemas or on Facebook by searching for ‘Showcase CinemasUK’.

Gavin Miller

Cast: Chloe Grace Moretz, Jamie Blackley, Mireille Enos, Joshua Leonard, Liana Liberato & Stacy Keach

Running Time: 1 Hr 45 Mins

Director: Rj Cutler [youtube id=”wH6PNeTy6Nc” width=”600″ height=”350″]

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