For popular high school senior Samantha Kingston, February 12—”Cupid Day”—should be one big party, a day of valentines and roses and the privileges that come with being at the top of the social pyramid. And it is…until she dies in a terrible accident that night. However, she still wakes up the next morning. In fact, Sam lives the last day of her life seven times, until she realizes that by making even the slightest changes, she may hold more power than she ever imagined.
Back in 2010, when I still read YA books, I discovered Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. The novel became an instant favorite and I absolutely loved the fun mix between Groundhog Day and Mean Girls. I’ve always enjoyed this type of “time-traveling” concept and the story also featured a powerful message. I’m a sucker for stories that include strong character development and this is a perfect example.
Years later, I still remembered the book fondly, but I’d often wondered if I would enjoy it that much had I read it now for the first time. So when I saw that the film adaptation had been released this year, I decided to watch it in order to prove my point. Was I too “old” for Before I Fall? Would the film version spoil my idealized vision of the book?
95 minutes and many tears later, I realized that the film was actually as powerful & magic as the book. And this is how film adaptations are done, Hollywood! Before you say anything, I admit I cry easily and I might’ve been overly emotional the day I watched it, but believe me, I hadn’t enjoyed a teen flick since Hailee Steinfeld’s The Edge of Seventeen.
Before I Fall was surprisingly smart, tender and emotional. The young actors were good and the script perfectly captured the novel’s essence. As Sam keeps living the same day over and over again, I couldn’t help but wonder what I would do in that situation. And who doesn’t love a good redemption story? Can’t wait to watch it again!