*Minor spoilers ahead*
Hot take here but I didn’t love the book Me Before You by Jojo Moyes. I thought Lou was a bit annoying (I didn’t like being in her head at all, to be honest), the writing was too fluffy, the whole giving up on life because you are now disabled angle seemed semi-problematic, and parts of the story were just dull. I gave it a 3 stars on Goodreads.
Now, a lot of people I know absolutely loved the book (here’s hoping they don’t read this) and I can partially see why. The romance is pretty sweet, I like the discussion about the right to self-determination over one’s body, and the concept itself is very interesting. I personally wish there had been more substance to the book, but I do see why some people adored it.
My rating of the book is 3 stars, but my movie rating is actually 5! I really, really liked the movie!
The biggest perk of watching the movie has to be getting out of Lou’s head. I just got so bored when I was reading her debates over Patrick and Will. She honestly sounded so naive and young in the book which didn’t fit in with the rest of the story. Thankfully, the movie focuses less on Lou and Patrick’s relationship and more on Lou and Will’s. Thinking back on it, Lou and Patrick’s dynamic and relationship was the biggest thing I disliked about the book. Getting rid of a lot of these conflicts in the movie was a really good call and helped me enjoy the story much more.
I love the casting choices! Like many others, I fell in love with Emilia Clarke on Game of Thrones. I really liked her portrayal of Lou; she helped me see Lou as more independent and quirky than naive and annoying. I was also familiar (of course) with Matthew Lewis as Patrick (Neville Longbottom for the win!). Finally, I new of Jenna Coleman because of Doctor Who. Other than these three I hadn’t heard of the other cast members until watching the movie. I really liked everyone and think they did a great job bringing the best parts of the book to life on screen. Sam Claflin did a great job as Will. It felt like he had more character and personality in the movie than the book, though my annoyance with Lou’s narration in the book could have distracted me from any of Will’s character development.
I mentioned it a bit, but the movie really does highlight what I think are the best parts of the book. We get outside of Lou’s thoughts and actually see Will’s character develop over their 6 months together. The fact that jojo Moyes was the screenwriter ensured that the core messages and pots of the book remained while we could abandon some of the smaller conflicts and storylines to focus on the main story. In this case, I really think the movie was better than the book! Regardless of whether you liked or disliked the book, I think you would really enjoy the movie!