An enchanting performance from Game of Thrones starlet Emilia Clarke (Terminator: Genesis) saves this middling romantic-drama – that doesn’t quite have the oomph of some recent genre entries.
It doesn’t do enough with the compelling source material from Jojo Moyes’ novel – not quite offering the same emotional clout of say, A Fault in Our Stars – and is a surprisingly slow-burner before it eventually picks up the pace somewhat late in the day.
Clarke stars as a playing-it-safe, currently out-of-work, 26-year-old small town girl Louisa Clark, who gets an out-of-the-blue job as a carer to ‘posh’ paralysed man Will Traynor (The Hunger Games’ Sam Claflin) – which is of comfort to her down-on-their-luck family, which includes Dr Who’s Jenna Coleman as her sister.
He has been left quadriplegic (with generally only movement from the neck up) after a motorcycle accident two years earlier which has left this handsome, high-flying, extreme sports enthusiast, with severe depression and seemingly little to live for.
And as the enthusiastic Lou starts to put a smile on his face – much to the chagrin of neglected fitness-mad boyfriend Patrick (Harry Potter’s Neville Longbottom star Matthew Lewis) – she manages to get him away from the confines of his four walls as he starts to enjoy life again, but unfortunately not enough to force him to change a dark decision that he’s made, as Lou starts to fall in love with her patient.
But while remaining watchable throughout – with the odd sweet moment complete with Ed Sheeran’s dulcet tones in the background – this never ever offers anything ground-breaking at any point, and simply efficiently passes the time.
Sadly not a lot more.
It does throw in a few potentially tear-jerking moments if you like to reach for the hankies, but without Clarke (this definitely won’t hurt her burgeoning career) this could have been quite bland – and should have been so much more.
Gavin Miller [youtube id=”T0MmkG_nG1U” width=”600″ height=”350″]
Cast: Emilia Clarke, Sam Claflin, Charles Dance, Janet Mcteer, Jenna Coleman, Matthew Lewis, Brendan Coyle, Samantha Spiro, Vanessa Kirby, Ben Lloyd-Hughes & Joanna Lumley
Running Time: 1 Hr 50 Mins
Director: Thea Sharrock
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