When 'Everything, Everything' Matters
The movie offered a fresh and dainty synopsis. I thought to myself this is going to be another predictable teen-flick, girl-meets-boy film. But it hit me right from the beginning. For how in the world can a young girl managed to literally stay inside her home during the last eighteen years of her life? She does not have much of a choice. Her name is Madeline Whittier or 'Maddy', and the girl is suffering from SCID (severe combined immunodeficiency), a rare genetic disorder without a working immune system. Expose her to the outside world and she can easily fold up by life-threatening infections caused by viruses, bacteria and fungi. But here comes a sweet boy, Olly Bright, who unknowingly, will give heaven and earth on her doorstep just so she can have a taste of 'Everything, Everything' that the world offers. So there goes a love story which was doomed from the start. But surprisingly, I was willing to join them in their struggle and discovery, I could not care less what is going to happen in the aftermath.
Movie Tie-In Cover
One of Those Sweet Quotes
“What colour are your eyes?
Olly (O): blue
Madeline (M): Be more specific please
O: jesus. girls. ocean blue
M: Atlantic or Pacific
O: atlantic. What colour are yours?
M: Chocolate brown.
O: More specific please
M: 75% cacao butter, dark chocolate brown
O: hehe. nice”
― Nicola Yoon, Everything, Everything
The movie is directed by Stella Meghie based on the novel written by Nicola Yoon. Our main protagonist, Maddy, is brilliantly portrayed by Amandla Stenberg while the charming Olly, is Nick Robinson. Amandla's role here is a far cry from being Rue in Hunger Games and Nick's roles as Ben Parish in The 5th Wave or Zach Mitchell in Jurassic World. But I will remember them now as my favorite and fearless, Maddy & Olly. Despite a tragic ending I am forming in my head, I seriously cheered for them all throughout the film. I always carried in my heart, no matter how dimly-lit, a burning candle of hope and love that resuscitates life out of Maddy. Not only once did the movie made me feel like I am standing on the edge of a cliff. But always, it will bring me to a safer dimension that for as long as I have someone to hold my hand, I am ready to fall. It was a difficult journey for them, especially for Maddy. I empathize with her as she tries to make the unreal, look real. Thank God for her intricately-built home where everything is provided. As the movie progresses, I am drawn into Maddy's struggle between knowing and feeling, that they are two different things, and how Olly tries his darn best to bridge the gap.
“It's a hard concept to hold on to--the idea that there was a time before us. A time before time.
In the beginning there was nothing. And then there was everything.”
― Nicola Yoon, Everything, Everything
Anika Noni Rose plays the mom Pauline, who carefully planned the sealed and highly filtered environment Maddy calls home, and graciously provided her with 'Everything' she could ever need and more. She is determined, resolved and willing to do anything to protect her daughter from dying, as any other mother would by all means. Losing a husband and another child broke her spirit in great proportions and she is not going to lose Maddy ever. Who can question that kind of love for her child? No one did. Meet Ana de la Reguera as Carla, the nurse of Maddy. Her devotion and commitment to take care of Maddy is tested already. She became her closest ally and she was willing to take risks just for Maddy to be happy. But maybe not enough to save her.
What Really Matters?
If you wanted a thrilling ride of varying emotions from love, empathy, attraction, discovery, appreciation, to betrayal, guilt, resentment, indignation, and hopefully back to love, this movie is worth watching. In the end, you will ask yourself what really matters and 'Everything, Everything' will be answered by what your heart dictates. Savor a whole lifetime to experience the joys and pains of living a life meant for you. Whether the movie ends tragically or not is something that you need to find out on your own. Meanwhile, as if the movie was not enough, I am going to hit the bookstore now and buy the book of Nicola Yoon and have a more complete taste of all the crisp and witty dialogues that reverberates in my mind.