Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Every Day (DVD)

When we get a request for an item, we usually try to order it for the collection (if it sounds like something that will circulate well). This is especially the case when we get multiple requests for said item. But when we get an unusual number of requests for the same thing over the course of several weeks... Well, that's when it gets personal. That's when "We should probably order this for the library" becomes "I need to check this thing out for myself!" Because I need to see for myself what appeal of the item. 

This was the case with the movie adaption of Every Day by David Levithan. Since its DVD release earlier this summer, we'd probably gotten no fewer than a baker's dozen requests. The demand was so great it seemed to be shaping up to be the New Twilight. Fortunately it had been ordered and was on the way.

And yesterday I finally got the chance to watch the movie for myself. I'd read the book several years ago and remember enjoying it. But I'm sorry to say the movie did not hold up to the hype surrounding it. Every Day, if you recall, is the story of "A," a wandering spirit-soul sort of being that wakes up in a different body every day. Up until this point, A has tried to remain inconspicuous and do as little damage to the host's life as possible. But then A wakes in the body of Justin, boyfriend to Rhiannon (and kind of a jerk). A falls for Rhiannon and starts bending and breaking each and every rule to be with her. It's one of those bittersweet star-crossed romances you know is doomed from the start, but you still want to root for them anyway.

I'm sorry to say the concept did not translate well to film. At all.

First: It was very difficult to get behind A's character because he/she/it/whatever kept changing appearances. And then there was this creepy vibe surrounding the character that wasn't so obvious in the book, but was very obvious in the movie. In watching the movie, I found I didn't like either A or Rhiannon. 

Second: Key characters and situations were left out of the film. Including the main antagonist who, in the book, stalked and threatened A for most of the story. The film attempted to make up for this slight by adding characters and drama not in the book, but none of this furthered the story. If anything, it took away from it.

Last and Most of All: The film was boring. It was nothing more than a montage of first meetings. There was no action. There was no conflict. And there was no satisfying resolution. Just "Hello, I'm Samantha today. Let's hang out" or "Hello, I'm George today, let's hang out." Snore. It literally took me four hours to watch this movie, because I kept pausing it to do other things (fold laundry, play with the cats, check social media, etc.)

I admit I am seriously disappointed. After all those requests, after all that hype, I was expecting and hoping for something amazing. Or at least a sweet, lighthearted story. Even something fun. Instead I got one of the most boring movies ever. 

I'm sure the film will circulate. After all, the book was very popular. And I hear the author is planning to publish a sequel later this year. And I'm also sure there are people who will love this movie. It just wasn't for me. --AJB

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