So I read the book and wanted to see the film and my lovely sister took me on Saturday. I didn’t have massive expectations as the ads I’d seen for the film looked a lot more chic-flicky than I would’ve liked.
It’s odd seeing a film that deals with the subject of assisted suicide being marketed as an alternative rom-com. The film itself as you may already know is based on the novel by Jojo Moyes, and is told from the point of view of Louisa Clark, who is in need of a job to help support her family, and replies to a job ad seeking someone to help care for a disabled young man.
I was gripped by the book, but as a romantic tale, it read a little odd, similarly in the film, there isn’t really a clear underlying connection between the two lead characters, it seems to simply help the plot along. I have also more recently been reading about some public reaction regarding the idea that a disabled life isn’t worth living. To my recollection this subject is discussed in more detail in the book, that Will has considered his options regarding his health, but in the film is is very brushed over. It seems to be a be a bit of a foregone conclusion that he will be going ahead with his plans for assisted suicide.
When I read the book I didn’t consider what Jojo Moyes’ personal experiences or research into disability might have been – I think that is perhaps the case with many able-bodied readers. I can now see why many are frustrated that such a tale has become popular. Though I personally feel that it’s a good platform for discussion about assisted suicide, using an able bodied actor was perhaps not the best option, and I certainly don’t hold the view the a disabled life isn’t worth living.
In terms of the film, I did cry, I was moved. But I don’t think that was because it was necessarily a good film. I personally was moved because the idea that someone would wish to end their life, in spite of all the good that surrounded the lead character is very upsetting.
Have you seen the film, or read the book? If so, what did you think?