SHOWCASE CINEMAS PETERBOROUGH, OUT NOW
CAST: TONI COLLETTE, DREW BARRYMORE, DOMINIC COOPER, PADDY CONSIDINE, JACQUELINE BISSET & NOAH HUNTLEY
RUNNING TIME: 1 HR 52 MINS
DIRECTOR: CATHERINE HARDWICKE
A few big laughs mixed in with a few big issues.
Director Catherine Hardwicke made her name as a filmmaker with Thirteen (and then went on to direct the first Twilight film) – and those who enjoyed the 2003 hit movie will be pleased to know that you’ll find similar stylish and dark tones with this cancer-themed buddy drama-dy.
Jess (Drew Barrymore) and Milly (Toni Collette) are two best friends, and despite their differences have been inseparable since childhood – sharing everything from clothes to boyfriends.
Milly has a great career as a PR executive, with a rock-star husband (Dominic Cooper) and two beautiful kids. Jess works in a community garden, lives in a boathouse with her boyfriend Jago (Paddy Considine) and desperately wants a baby.
Out of the blue, Milly is hit with the life changing news that she has breast cancer. She needs Jess by her side more than ever. But with Jess trying to balance her own life alongside being there for Milly, it soon proves to be only a matter of time before the pressure on their bond takes its toll.
As you can imagine from the tough subject matter, there are tears aplenty throughout the duration – particularly the scenes of Milly during pre and post-surgery.
Toni Collette (Oscar-nominated for The Sixth Sense) gives the stand-out performance of the film as the stricken cancer patient – with her silence in some of the more hard-hitting scenes proving to be louder than words.
It isn’t the best of its ilk – and definitely only a middling entry in Hardwicke’s catalogue – with a surprisingly predictable and sometimes uneven feel to its female-centric plotting.
But with Collette’s genuine on-screen chemistry with Drew Barrymore – who puts in another amiably competent turn – this is one you still shouldn’t miss if you like a tear-jerker.
Rating: 3/5 Mikey Clarke