I was able to see two screenings of “Everything, Everything.” And truth be told, I’ll probably still go and see it again, and then maybe one more time after that.
Didn’t think it would be possible that a movie centered on teenagers would end up moving me, but it did. I should probably first give a praise to Nicola Yoon, author of the best-selling novel it’s based on; then to the screenwriters who adapted her words to film.
This is not just your average “teen” movie. It’s a story about the journey of life, romance, first loves and an awakening of the spirit. Amandla Stenberg graciously plays Maddy, who is an intelligent 18-year-old hermetically sealed in her home due to an illness. You don’t get the sense that she’s trapped, however. For someone who has never left her home, she has a full life and is surprisingly upbeat and positive about most things.
Enter the boy next door, literally. Olly (played by Nick Robinson) is a mercurial teenager, full of intrigue and mystery and wonder about why Maddy was never seen outside. As the two got to know each other, it was sweet to watch how those first moments of talking and texting were executed.
The pace of the film and the innocence of the emotions were refreshing and, for me, showed a more mature and positive image of that first feeling of love.
While Maddy has always had a curiosity of the outside world, to which she didn’t belong, it was through getting to know Olly that her yearning manifested into something more. She had to feel what she was missing. And took great risks to do so.
I cannot recommend this movie enough, and not just to teens, but moviegoers of all ages. You’re sure to take something precious away from this movie — no matter where your age falls on the spectrum of life. For me, this movie was just everything.