Everything Everything: Slow, sure-footed romance
Cast : Amanda Stenberg, Nick Robinson
Director : Stella Meghie
It's inevitable that everyone who watches Everything, Everything, will draw a parallel to The Fault in our Stars. The two films have way too much in common. But, at least there’s a modicum of hope for the hopeless teen romantic here, because the girl isn't diagnosed with a fatal disease.
Instead, what we have is Amandla Stenberg as Maddy Whittier, a precocious teen who's stuck in the bubble that is her home because of a condition that has made her allergic to the world – at least that's what her doctor-cum-overbearing-mom Dr Whittier would have you believe. And so Maddy, who's got an imagination that most teen romance novelists would call 'vivid and full of life', lives sheltered in the house, never once venturing outside till she turns 18.
That's when Hollywood's latest answer to Zac Efron moves into the house next door. Olly, played by Nick Robinson, is the kind of young man that no dad with a teen daughter would be happy having as a neighbour. Luckily, there's no dad here and the mom, well, let's not talk about her for a bit, doesn't really know what's going on. Maddy has a nurse whose ancestors must have worked in the Cinderella household – going by how fairy godmotherly she turns out to be to a girl who ostensibly has a terrible disorder.
This is where things get blah. The minute she sets eyes on him, Maddy hears violins. Or whatever the pop-queen version of violins and butterflies is these days. Slowly, she breaks the rules. He breaks more rules. They kiss. They're awkward. The mom finds out. She channels her inner Angry Victorian Father figure. There's a relatively interesting twist at the end. It's far-fetched admittedly, and given the teenage goop, and the extremely slow pace at which the movie moves leading up to said twist, even the twist feels too little, too late. But then again, if you believed that The Fault in Our Stars was a modern classic, then you’ll probably survive this one.