Everything, Everything

Starring Amandla Stenberg (as Maddy) and Nick Robinson (as Olly), Everything, Everything is based on a young adult novel by Nicola Yoon. Olly has just moved in next door and he and Maddy are teen love interests doing all they can to work around the fact that Maddy has a rare autoimmune disease which prohibits her from ever leaving her home. Maddie is allergic to so many things she has no idea of all the things she may be allergic to and her immune system does very little to protect her from bacteria, viruses and infection, so she has to live a shuttered life.  Along with this huge issue, Maddy’s understandably overprotective mom forbids the relationship and Olly’s dad is physically abusive toward his mom and has a problem holding down a job.

Let’s just dive in, shall we? Everything, Everything has several problems that overshadow whatever may be “good” about it.  The narrator (Maddy) explains most of Maddy’s medical history, some of Maddy’s family history, her feelings for the boy she cannot touch, her emotional state at any given moment, how much it stinks being isolated for all these years, etc.  This makes the movie dull at points because there are several scenes (some of them too lengthy) where you watch this pretty girl isolated in her room while listening to narration.  Stenberg does a great job at changing her facial expressions in sync with the narration, but it’s not enough.  Then there are the cute but silent scenes (because Maddy is inside the house and Olly is outside or across the way in his own bedroom) where the two teens are establishing their relationship.  So, there are bits of time where there is no dialogue between characters.

Some of the best scenes occur in Maddy’s imagination, where she is capable of being outside of her home, talking to a person face to face with no glass between them; and that would be fine, except that sadly even in her imagination she is sick and discussing dying. So, all of these elements – the narrated silent scenes, the silent scenes with the potential boyfriend, along with the flashbacks, the imaginary scenes and the real-time actual scenes Maddy has with her mother and her nurse, etc. – make the movie feel extremely choppy.  There are a lot of moving parts to this film and they do not work together effortlessly.

If you’re old enough to remember The Boy in the Plastic Bubble (1976), there’s really nothing new to see here as far as the story goes. I haven’t seen that movie in years, but still remember the way it made me feel.  Everything, Everything did not give me those feelings at all.  It isn’t a cheesy movie, which is a good thing; but neither did it make me sniffle or cry or smile widely – not even at the end.  The movie feels sterile, like Maddy’s room.  I mean, this girl is sick.  You believe she is going to die without seeing an ocean or kissing a boy or going to college.  As lovely as her home is, she can never leave.  The sadness is already there, but I just didn’t feel it strongly enough; and when more joyful moments occurred I didn’t feel those as strongly as I would have liked to either.  Perhaps I was having an off day; who’s to say?  I was invested in this story and its characters.  It just didn’t give me much back.

On a positive note, there are some interesting themes that run through the story which make the movie worth watching and the acting of the two young leads was very good.  Also, there are some surprises in this otherwise pretty predictable story.

Everything, Everything earned 6 out of 10 bloops. It’s not bad, but could have been better.  Tweens and teens and romantic saps (I’m not judging…  I’m just saying…) will most likely care for it much more than I did.   As for adults, if you don’t have a child or know a child who wants to see it I would advise you to wait for it to stream if you’re interested in the movie at all.

Bloops:

1   =   worst ever, avoid at all cost
2   =   very bad, forget about it!
3   =   poor movie, not recommended
4   =   not good, even for free – NO!
5   =   so-so, worth it if you don’t have to pay
6   =   not bad, could have been better
7   =   good movie, worth seeing
8   =   great movie, don’t miss it!
9   =   excellent movie, a must see!
10 =   a masterpiece, go see it now!

It’s been a while…

Hey there! It’s been a while since I reviewed anything. I had a bit of surgery to recover from but I’m much better now.  While I was down I binge watched so much Netflix, Hulu and HBO GO, etc., I don’t even remember all the things I watched.  So here are some mini-reviews of what I’ve seen.  Still haven’t seen The Handmaid’s Tale, the seventh season of Archer, second season of Master of None, and Queen Sugar (I know I’m late.  Don’t judge me!), but they are soooo on my list. Thank you to everyone who kept checking to see if I had written anything and those who kept reading, referring and sharing what I’ve already written and kept my little blog alive.  Sincerely, thank you so much.

Ballers
HBO – starring the Rock
7.5 out of 10 bloops

I like this show. It is worth seeing, particularly if you’re a fan of the Rock.  It’s kind of like Entourage meets Arliss.  If you liked those shows, you’ll really like this one.

Dear White People
Netflix
8.5 out of 10 bloops

Surprisingly, much better than I expected it to be given that I disliked the movie very, very much. I felt like it was too similar to something Spike Lee had already made, and if I want to see a Spike Lee movie, I can watch a Spike Lee movie.  What really made me watch the Netflix series is that one of the episodes is directed by Barry Jenkins (Moonlight).  Would have been really nice if they could have gotten Spike Lee to direct one, but alas… The uniqueness of the format of the show is what makes it interesting.  It’s well acted, well cast, and confronts and discusses important issues surrounding racists and racism.  Another one of the programs the very people who need to be watching won’t.  You think it is going to be an exercise in bashing white people but it is really about engaging one another in a conversation, coming to some understanding about one another and working toward solutions.

13 Reasons Why
Netflix
8.5 out of 10 bloops

Another great show which puts suicide all up in your face, and covers all the things that can contribute to it, including but not limited to, low self esteem, negative self image, peer pressure, bullying, sexual assault, rape culture, depression, underage drinking, and just so much more.  If you have a tween or teenager who is willing to watch it with you, you really should.  You could literally talk about each episode for hours because there is so much going on in the story with these young people.  And no, it does not glorify suicide.  This is a mini-review, so I won’t get into all of that.  Watch it and form your own opinion.  The initial premise is a bit silly to me, but you have to go with it to get through the story.  A second season is coming.  I guess it will be interesting to see how that is executed.

Greenleaf
OWN
9.0 out of 10 bloops

All I can say is Oprah… Holy Crap Girl! You have done it!  Haven’t seen Queen Sugar yet, but this right here is fire!  If you like drama and excellent acting I can’t tell you enough how much I encourage you to watch Greenleaf.  It’s about a pastor of a megachurch and his dynasty.  Lynn Whitfield is outstanding as the first lady of the church and it’s like someone spilled all the church secrets.  Very well done, indeed.  It’s dramatic like Empire, but with class and Jesus.  And there’s a Winans in it and everything!  The music is an important part of the show.

This is Us
NBC/I think I watched on Hulu or Amazon. I really cannot remember.  Check both.  It’s worth it!
9.0 out of 10 bloops

This show features a multicultural, multifaceted family that contains a bunch of imperfect people trying to navigate how to love each other and stay together. You see, the family looks all perfect and kumbayaa on the outside, but if you look a little bit deeper you see all the many, many, flaws – just like real families.  And they’re beautiful.  And they love each other.  It is just a beautiful show.  If you have almost any type of family relationship troubles, you will see your loved ones in this show.  I was told it will make me cry every week, which is why I avoided it.  (I don’t know about anyone else but I don’t want to be crying over some t.v. show every week.  Life is hard enough as it is.)  It didn’t make me cry every week, but when it gets you, it gets you and it isn’t terrible.  Well-acted, well written, well-conceived, just superbly well done.

Welcome message

What I’m Watching This Week

  • Alien: Covenant – Hoping to get a preview pass for this one by tomorrow at least!!! Who couldn’t love an Alien movie?
  • Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Long Haul – After seeing the commercial for this I was interested.  A family road trip with no devices.  Sounds like hell.  Poor children.

Other Reviews:

Ready Player One
A Wrinkle in Time
Lady Bird
I, Tonya
The Florida Project
Black Panther
Molly’s Game
The Post
Phantom Thread
Den of Thieves
All the Money in the World
Coco
The Greatest Showman
The Disaster Artist
Call Me By Your Name
Three Billboards outside Ebbing, Missouri
The Shape of Water
Marshall
The Man Who Invented Christmas
Victoria and Abdul
Thor: Ragnarok
Kingsman: The Golden Circle
Mother!
It
Good Time
Atomic Blonde
Dunkirk
Girls Trip
Spider-Man: Homecoming
The Big Sick
Baby Driver
All Eyez on Me 
It Comes at Night 
The Wedding Plan 
Wonder Woman
Everything, everything
King Arthur: Legend of the Sword
Beauty and the Beast
Raw

Kong: Skull Island
Logan
Bitter Harvest
The Girl with All the Gifts
A Cure for Wellness
Get Out
Hidden Figures
Fences
Moonlight
Hell or High Water
Loving
La La Land
Lion
Manchester by the Sea
Arrival
Hacksaw Ridge
Nocturnal Animals
Captain Fantastic
Elle
Jackie
Florence Foster Jenkins
I Am Not Your Negro

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