Loving a bit of British film... Review of 'Now is Good'

Thursday, 27 September 2012

Well hello there,

A bit of a change from the usual fashion and beauty posts but it seems my blog is growing into more of a general 'girly lifestyle' blog... it sounds so cheesy, this post is pretty lazy as I had written it for my college magazine anyways and decided to adapt it for the ol' blogosphere, make it a bit chattier, etc. I am pretty tight and but that I mean I hate paying cinema prices, and will very rarely go to the cinema on any day other than 'Orange Wednesdays' I'm not even on Orange but luckily for me both my Mum and Dad are so I get one of them to get the code and forward it on to me... (cheeky!) I went to see 'Now is Good' a few weeks back with my friend Nerissa, I'm not a huge fan of soppy 'chick flick' type movies but thought I'd give it a chance as it was on the list of films I'd been requested to review (the rest being thrillers, action movies and horrors!) 'Now is Good' pleasantly surprised me now I'm not saying it was amazing, and I'll re-watch it hundreds of times, but it was better than I'd expected. 

Photo from paddyconsidine.co.uk (not intended to make profit or to breach copyright)

Now is Good (12A)

Director: Ol Parker

Starring: Dakota Fanning, Jeremy Irvine, Paddy Considine, Olivia Williams, Kaya Scodelario.

Adapted from the novel ‘Before I Die' by Jenny Downham, 'Now is Good' centres around the life of Tessa (Dakota Fanning) a teenage girl who has recently discovered she has only a short time left to live as she is dying from a rare form of leukaemia. Tessa is determined not to be treated any differently and compiles a ‘bucket list’ of sorts with a wide range of things she'd like to do before (as can be crudely put 'kicking the bucket') she dies, top of her ‘things-to-do’ is losing her virginity.

As I mentioned before I didn’t expect a lot from ‘Now is Good’ seeing Dakota Fanning’s name on the list of actors, I had presumed 'Now is Good' was a mega-budget Hollywood drama but was pleasantly surprised as in fact it is a British made film, by the BBC Films ,Blueprint Pictures and Goldcrest Pictures, rather refreshing that it wasn't in fact made by one of the titans of the film industry (you know the ones... Warner Bros. Universal, etc.)
 I really enjoy lower budget British films as they often show a grittier, more realistic and 'raw' Britain and to extent Now is Good delivers on this; Fanning’s performance as Tessa, with a rather  impressive English accent, delivers  a moving performance. The film depicts some rather shocking scenes showing the harsh reality of cancer, for me the scene involving the removal of Tessa's catheter and the scene involving the nose bleed even made me wince (and I have a pretty strong stomach.) But at the same time there are some inconsistencies, Tessa is dying from leukemia yet is able to gallivant about often wearing little more than a t-shirt and tube skirt, I'm not saying I know from experience what's it like to be in that position, though I imagine you wouldn't be bursting with energy bounding around. The film does show the effects Tessa's desire to 'live' before she dies has on her but I feel at times it could have been shown in a more 'realistic' way. 

Having penned a varied list of things to do before she dies ranging from taking drugs, riding an elephant, sex, and breaking the law, to name a few. The film follows the adventures Tessa embarks upon in her quest to ‘live’, with the help of her wild best friend Zoey (Kaya Scodelario, Skins) and her good looking next door neighbour Adam (Jeremy Irvine, War Horse) who becomes her first (and only) love of her short life. Another issue I had was the cliche that as Tessa was dying she 'had to fall in love' perhaps because I am the eternal singleton... Lovely as it was for Tessa to find happiness through love, I feel it is a little cliched. For me the best performance was delivered by Paddy Considine, I first saw Considine in 'Dead Man's Shoes' as I love British film, 'This is England' is one of my favourite films of all time, I watched 'Dead Man's Shoes' last year in my film class and was in awe of the grittyness and overall feel Shane Meadows creates through his films, in that film Considine portrayed a subtle threatening menace, his performance was incredible and in 'Now is Good' he delivered again. I feel his performance as Tessa's dad was incredible, it was moving and was believable, the moment in which he breaks down realising how little time his daughter has left is heart-breaking. His denial throughout the film that Tessa was actually going to die was often undercut by her younger brother and his innocence in his attitude to it all delivering cracking lines such as "Dad can we go on holiday when Tessa dies?" Overall 'Now is Good' is worth a watch if you’re looking for a change from the usual soppy films, though clich├ęd at times it is a fairly impressive British dramedy.

Though a little different to the usual posts, I hope you enjoy my wee review of 'Now is Good' what do you think? Would you like to see more reviews similar to this? Book reviews, etc...? I often have to write them anyways for my college magazine so like this one I can adapt them for my blog. I hope you're all well and such like, and shall be posting a more typical beauty or fashion post tonight :)

So shall speak to you all later on, 
Till then, 



  1. Ahh i really wanted to see this!! might have to watch it now :)


    1. I'd definitely recommend it :) although I have a few criticisms overall I really enjoyed it :)


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