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A 17 year old girl named Madeline Whittier has a rare disease that causes her to have to stay indoors 24/7 with her filtered air. Her whole life is basically books, her mom, and Carla(her nurse). One day, a moving truck pulls in next door. There she sees Olly. Olly Bright is Maddy's new neighbor. They get to know each other through emails. The more they get to know each other, the more they fall in love. Olly starts to make Maddy realize that she isn't really living. This starts the adventures of Maddy's new life. Written by
"Everything Everything" may not be "all that", but it is creative and charming.
SCID, severe combined immunodeficiency, is a rare genetic disorder in which the sufferer's immune system is so weak that any bacteria or virus could prove fatal, requiring the patient to live in a sterile environment. SCID is the disease at the center of the plot in the YA romantic drama "Everything Everything" (PG-13, 1:36) and has appeared in various forms of popular culture for decades. The 1976 made-for-TV movie "The Boy in the Plastic Bubble" (starring a young John Travolta) was inspired by the childhood of SCID sufferer David Vetter (and Ted DeVita, who had a similar disease). The film, in turn, inspired a song on Paul Simon's 1986 "Graceland" album, a musical and even a popular political analogy (referring to the isolation of living in the White House). However, most cultural references to the disease have been in small screen comedies, including "The Bubble Boy" episode of "Seinfeld", an episode of "That 70s Show" and an installment of RiffTrax in which veterans of "Mystery Science Theater 3000" mockingly comment on the 1976 film. But "Everything Everything" treats SCID with deadly seriousness.
Maddy Whittier (Amandla Stenberg) is about to turn 18, but hasn't been outdoors since she was an infant. Due to her SCID diagnosis, Maddy's mother, Pauline (Anika Noni Rose), keeps her in a germ-free environment in which her windows don't open, her clothes are sterilized before she wears them and the only outsiders with whom she interacts (after they pass through a special antechamber) are her nurse, Carla (Ana de la Reguera), and Carla's teenage daughter, Rosa (Danube Hermosillo). It's a good thing for Maddy that Pauline is a doctor, so she can monitor her daughter's health and make enough money to pay for their specially-designed house. And Pauline is the only family Maddy has left, since her father and brother were killed in a car crash long ago. Maddy spends her days reading, learning about life from the internet and looking through her window dreaming about the outside world, especially the ocean.
Then, something else of great interest shows up on the other side of Maddy's windows. A young man named Olly (Nick Robinson) and his family move in next door. Maddy and Olly quickly connect, in spite of the space (and glass) between them, helped out by the fact that their bedroom windows face each other. Their flirting looks and waves give way to texts when Olly writes his cell number on his window. Of course, they Email too. As our protagonists get to know each other one digital message at a time, Olly is not deterred by Maddy's unusual situation and she wants nothing more than to be in the same room as him. Without consulting Pauline, Carla makes Maddy's wish happen, which only makes these crazy kids want to spend even more time together and maybe even touch someday. Pauline figures out what's going on and gets very angry, fearing that pursuing this relationship would mean Maddy's life. But Maddy starts thinking that her life isn't really "living" at all and that love is "everything everything".
"Everything Everything" is sweet, sappy and surprising. Screenwriter J. Mills Goodloe ("The Age of Adeline") adapts Nicola Yoon's 2015 novel faithfully, rendering a romantic drama that can be seen either as fresh or far-fetched or both. Although it's somewhat predictable (especially if you've seen the theatrical trailer, which reveals more than this review), unless you've read the book, you probably won't see the twist coming. Director Stella Meghie (only helming her second feature film) stages some of the less visual aspects of the story with imagination and keeps the melodrama to a minimum, while playing up the romance and its cuteness, along with taking advantage of the attractiveness and chemistry of her two stars. Stenberg and Robinson are talented young actors with bright futures ahead of them. This movie has the sweetness of the 1976 John Travolta movie, updated for the 21st century. (It can also be understood as "The Fault in Our Stars" meets "American Beauty".) The film is very likely to appeal to the target audience and maybe even some of the male persuasion and/or Movie Fans who no longer have the number "1" as the first digit in their ages. It's also encouragingly post-racial, with a small but diverse cast and the obvious differences in the backgrounds of Maddy and Olly not only not an issue, but not even mentioned. "Everything Everything" may not exactly be "all that", but it is creative & charming. "B"
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