I haven’t read the book on which Me Before You is based on. It could be, and from looking at the largely positive reviews it received upon release, it is likely that it is, a touching, subtlety written narrative.
Unfortunately the trailer for the film, which stars Emilia Clarke as a caregiver for Sam Clafin’s paralysed lead, falls into the trap of making the film look schlocky, typically ‘British’ and just generally irritating.
The trailer pitches the comedy and heartfelt connections in a similar vein to Richard Curtis, a writer and director who I believe should receive far more criticism than he does. Bizarrely, Curtis’ films seems to have garnered such a loyal following that his Love Actually has now seemingly joined the roster of traditional Christmas films – perhaps because Christmas is the one time of the year in which people are generally more open to cliché and superficial romanticism. Curtis has managed to create this British hyperreality in which Curtis’ construct of romance is then believed to be the actual reality, and in turn reality is then created in line with his construct. Thus British people, and particularly British people in love, act in a very specific way that bares very little, if any resemblance to real life.
Sadly the trailer for the film, with its producers clearly identifying their target audience, is edited to resemble such a reality. Thus characters interact with one another in emotional, heartfelt ways, all sound tracked to the apparently dulcet tones of Ed Sheeran (Ed Sheeran’s inclusion and his repugnant attitude towards women in his lyrics is another matter). The editing is heavy-handed and dull, the characters are unrealistically supposedly witty (I say supposedly because they have the appearance of being hugely intelligent and philosophical, but don’t stand up to scrutiny) with the soundtrack cutting to highlight and emphasise either the humour or poignancy of a scene.
I am not by any means deriding the film itself, although admittedly pseudo-meaningful films aren’t a particular interest of mine, but rather the lazy and generic construction of the trailer just to attract a specific, and profitable, audience