Movie Review – Now Is Good
Who’s In It?
Dakota Fanning, Jeremy Irvine, Paddy Considine, Olivia Williams, Kaya Scodelario
What’s It About??
A girl dying of leukemia compiles a list of things she’d like to do before passing away. Topping the list is her desire to lose her virginity.
Now Is Good charts the story of Tessa Scott, a 17 year old girl in the final months of her life, as she battles sickness and with the help of her best friend and partner-in-crime Zoey, tries to pack in as much as possible before she dies. Full of repressed anger and hurt, Tessa Scott is Dakota Fanning’s most grown up and complete role to date. She invests the character with a vulnerability and likeability despite the anger and rage she outwardly wears as a shield.
Tessa’s life as we see it is a series of moments, a child all grown up and carrying the weight of the world on her shoulders. In a way, she approaches her illness with more maturity than either of her parents; her dad in denial about her future and her mum distancing herself from her present. Both mum and dad have been cast excellently, Paddy Considine bearing the brunt of Tessa’s anger but suppressing his own and Olivia Williams almost dismissive over the whole affair. In both parents we see aspects of how Tessa’s life is being shaped and why she rebels against the decisions they make.
Tessa is happy to make do with her lot in life until the arrival of a boy, Adam, next door. Jeremy Irvine has a real chemistry with Dakota Fanning on screen, and the pair’s freindship blossoms gradually, both becoming more dependant on the other as Tessa’s illness progresses. Their relationship is tragic in that it’s doomed from the outset, but therin lies beauty in that knowing they have only a short time together, it frees them to make the decisions they truly want and to explore their feelings without restrictions or limitations.
Shot beautifully, there are moments of tenderness, tragedy and real love in Ol Parker’s movie, the camera being framed by Tessa’s expressions as we see things from her point of view. Her life is a series of moments and it is those most private and personal moments that we share in.
While at times hauntingly sad, it is more a film about celebrating life than mourning death, and seizing the moments we sometimes let slip by. A beautiful film charting love, life and death, Now Is Good reminds us of the power of emotions and the moments most precious to us all.
Now Is Good is out Wednesday, September 19th nationwide.
(Images courtesy MovieRoomReviews, NowIsGoodMovie, WarnerBros)