Friday 6 October 2023

Movie Review: You're Not You (2014)

Genre: Drama
Director: George C. Wolfe
Starring: Hilary Swank, Emmy Rossum, Josh Duhamel 
Running Time: 102 minutes

Synopsis: At 35-years-old, former pianist Kate Parker (Hilary Swank) develops the first signs of ALS (Lou Gehrig's Disease). 18 months later, the disease is rapidly degrading Kate's physical autonomy. Her lawyer husband Evan (Josh Duhamel) is doing his best to cope, and Kate hires shiftless college student Bec (Emmy Rossum) as a caretaker. Kate and Bec gradually develop a deep bond of friendship, while Evan's actions jeopardize the marriage.

What Works Well: Director George C. Wolfe rises above the hazards of trite territory by focussing on the unlikely and sometimes difficult friendship between the straightlaced Kate (slipping towards death) and free-spirited Bec (finally stumbling upon a purpose in life). Hilary Swank and Emmy Rossum both sparkle in creating two complex women finding strength, solace, and purpose, and their relationship nurtures the core theme of women seeking genuine connections. The strong supporting cast includes Loretta Devine and Ernie Hudson as a couple also dealing with ALS, plus Marcia Gay Harden, Frances Fisher, Ali Larter, and Ed Begley Jr.

What Does Not Work As Well: The tears are well earned, but the sentimentality levels occasionally threaten to break the needle. The side-stories involving Bec's love life (with Jason Ritter as potential boyfriend material) and her singing/songwriting aspirations deserved more screen time.

Conclusion: A cruel disease can still be an arena for triumphant spirits.

All Ace Black Movie Blog reviews are here.

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