Mayank’s Movie Review Series #5

Five Feet Apart


Five Feet Apart’s movie poster.

Mayank K., Reporter

From the beginning itself, I would like to say I thoroughly enjoyed this movie and would definitely recommend it to anyone who is a fan of films with romance. The film is about a young girl of age 17 named Stella (Haley Lu Richardson) who has cystic fibrosis and follows a very strict lifestyle of self-control; not letting herself step out of line for a second. All of this changes when she meets Will (Cole Sprouse), who has the same genetic disorder. All cystic fibrosis patients must stay six feet apart at all times so as not to let any bacteria reach another patient, as it would be catastrophic for their lungs. The movie follows their journey of falling in love, but not even being able to touch.

*Spoilers Ahead!*

What ends up happening is that Stella changes this rule to five feet apart, because she feels that cystic fibrosis has taken everything, her entire life from her, and she deserves to take a foot, just one foot back. They use a pool cue as to their divider and go on their first date, and the audience can see how happy they are. As their loving bond gets stronger, they throw caution to the wind to be together and end up causing something terrible. As for what happens, you can discover that yourself.

The movie pulls at your heartstrings, leaving you feeling sort of empty at the end. One complaint I have with the movie is that the end lacks closure in comparison to the novel. In the book, Will stands outside the window, telling Stella that they can no longer be together, for the safety of both of them. His reasons were more concrete and less cliche in the movie, but the book had one extra scene that contributed to its ending being better. 8 months after the breakup, Will is at an Airport in Brazil with a friend of his, and is watching the last youtube video Stella posted. He turns around and sees Stella, along with a few of her friends, and they move 6 feet apart, and then 5 feet apart. The book ends here, leaving some ambiguity for the reader to decide whether they are going to get back together or not. The reason for this scene being left out could be that the director has hopes to make a sequel, so he didn’t want to make a somewhat conclusive end to the movie.

*Spoilers Ended!*

The movie might not be critically acclaimed, as it received a rating of 7.1 on IMDb and only 55% on the Tomatometer, but it still struck a chord with me that I’m sure it did with many others. The romance between Stella and Will is cute yet heartbreaking, knowing that they can never be together. The movie is extremely realistic and encompasses the situation of cystic fibrosis patients in a way that I haven’t ever seen before. It also spread awareness of such a deadly genetic disorder, as most people are unaware of the existence of cystic fibrosis. I honestly fell in love with the romance between the characters and was heartbroken that they couldn’t show their love for each other in any physical form, like hugging, because it would lead to them dying.