“Five Feet Apart” Movie Review


Photo Credit/ Youtube CBS Films

Cole Sprouse stars in “Five Feet Apart” as Will, a teenager battling cystic fibrosis.

Alessia Pisciotta, Staff Writer

Allow me to preface by saying that the trailer gave me very high expectations going into this film. I was prepared for what was probably going to be a predictable teen romance film; a passionate, yet tragic love story between two ill teenagers, something along the lines of 2014’s “The Fault in Our Stars” — in many respects, it was. But the unfortunate twist in this story is that the characters could not get any closer than six feet apart because it would literally kill them — these characters agree to compromise on five feet apart instead.

Directed by “Jane the Virgin”’s Justin Baldoni, “Five Feet Apart” follows Stella (Haley Lu Richardson) and Will (Cole Sprouse), two teenagers with cystic fibrosis, who meet at Saint Grace Regional hospital. Individuals with CF are not allowed near each other at the risk of cross-infection, and on top of that, Will also carries the b. cepacia bacteria, an antibiotic-resistant complication of CF. This endangers Stella further, so you can imagine the complications that come into play with falling in love under

such circumstances.

The film brings about an awareness of CF. During production, many members of the CF community were involved for reference. However, mixed reviews were received from advocates, many of which thought the film misrepresented the disorder. For example, realistically, CF patients wouldn’t be allowed to be around each other without masks, as it showed in the film.

Put simply, the film brought me on one of the most adorable — yet incredibly emotional — roller coasters I have ever been on. I ugly-cried three times in an otherwise silent movie theater.

The actors did an amazing job at humanizing the experiences of those with CF that not many people may know about. Watching Stella and Will’s relationship grow was beautiful to watch because it was genuine. They couldn’t form a physical connection, so that gave the film room to showcase a stronger, more emotional one. That is what differentiated this movie and gave it the “ugly-cry” potential. The fact that they were forbidden to touch was a dark cloud over an otherwise epic love story.