Starring Lily Collins, Sam Claflin, Christian Cooke, Jaime Winstone
Directed by Christian Ditter, based on the novel Where Rainbows End by Cecelia Ahern
IMDB Rating: 7.2
From the novelist behind P.S I Love You comes a very English love story starring two of Britain’s potential future stars. It would be harsh to call this film cliché, but there’s nothing here you haven’t already probably seen.
Rosie Dunne and Alex Stewart (Collins & Claflin) are two lifelong friends, having grown up in the same neighbourhood in London since they were kids, and are both in love with each other. Alex Stewart plans to go to Harvard University in Boston and asks Rosie to come with him. However, Rosie gets pregnant just before they are set to fly off, setting their two lives on completely different paths. Trapped in their own ‘best friends can’t date’ world, they both make life choices they wish they didn’t, believing they could never be together.
The story itself is fairly good. The time span in this film is something that is solemn seen in romantic movies – a lot of them seemingly taking place over the course of one summer! This story takes place almost over a lifetime, which does bring its own problems. The main problem is the ageing of Lily Collins – instead of making her look older the makeup team seemed to make her look ill. Also, I think the team just refused to make Sam Claflin look any different throughout. Anyway, the story is solid and the emotions are believable. The two characters are very likeable, making them really easy to get behind, but this is the minimum you would expect from a romance like this. I must say that the comedy in this film hold up for about the first 30 minutes, and then becomes tedious. I guess if you’re a fan of the classic British slapstick then this will be right up your street, but it just wasn’t for me.
As mentioned earlier, the main characters in this movie are very likeable, making the performances by Lily Collins and Sam Claflin very enjoyable. In terms of acting quality, they’re both pretty solid. Unspectacular, but without fault. If I had to say who was better I would say Claflin just edges it in terms of quality. Jaime Winstone also delivered a good, funny performance as Rosie’s best friend.
The directing by German* Christian Ditter in this film is pretty good. There are some nice shots in this film and he generally keeps with the feel of the moment really well, which is impressive for someone with little experience in major, English-speaking movies.
Overall this is definitely one for fans of everything British. A very feel-good, British story that holds up without really delivering anything new to the saturated genre. This is also worth a watch for fans of the two actors, who will both be aiming for bigger and better things next year!
* I’m 90% sure Ditter is a German, I haven’t clarified this but I’m pretty sure he is looking at his previous films!