Me Before You…..buyer beware

I was looking forward to seeing the movie Me Before You. I just knew it would be the feel good movie of the year…or so it seemed in the trailer. A lovely romance of acceptance and unconditional love…tragedy turned to good.  Some people would probably appreciate a heads up about the real intent of this movie. I know I would have liked to know that it was about suicide…assisted suicide.  As sad as I knew it would be,  I also held out hope that perhaps there was a silver lining. Love conquers all.

It was not to be. Instead it was more about…”if you truly love someone…then let them go…” type of philosophy. That might work for some situations but as a mother who has lost a child against my will, I could not have done the “letting go.” At least, I think I wouldn’t. We can never know these things until faced with them. We only suppose what we would do. I guess we should honor the wishes of the person who is struggling. So very hard.

I am afraid I will spoil the plot here by sharing my thoughts on this movie…precisely my point!

SPOILER ALERT…the next paragraph will tell about the film…ending and all.

Life imitates art…art imitates life. I have not read the book if there is one nor have I read any reviews. I just simply went. Not only the plot was sad but also the songs. Two beautiful people thrown together by tragic circumstances. The handsome guy is basically a quadriplegic condemned to a lifetime of full dependence on others, after having led a full and athletic existence until an accident. His mother hires a young lady full of life and innocent wonder who is desperately seeking work. Plot thickens…predictably …they fall in love. When the young lady finds out that the young man has made plans to go to Switzerland to have his life ended medically, she comes up with a plot to try to make him change his mind by going to different places (funded by his wealthy parents and also the help of a male nurse) and experiencing nature and social events and fun things. She thinks she has him convinced to change his mind because of their love for each other but he is determined to die. His mother is reluctant, as any mother would be but she allows him to die anyway. There is no death scene but just a kiss goodbye…I have not disclosed everything here just the summarized version.  The movie is tastefully done but I left the theater in tears and sad remembrance of my own loss. Suicide takes lives.

In today’s world we have technology that sustains life…the breathing, the heartbeat…the existence. I know it is satisfying to the family and friends of a person who is terminally ill to keep them alive. I have written about my thoughts on the matter when the young lady who had the brain tumor moved from California to Oregon to have her life taken medically. I am all for it, I guess. I just don’t know if I am ‘for it’ until God forbid I am ever truly faced with such a decision. I never had a say in the matter of my own son’s death.

While the movie was unfolding at the end, I found myself resentful of the fact that I did not know the full plot of the story before I bought my ticket. Like in many movies  there is always the surprise element as the plot twists and turns and then WHAMMY…surprise…there is a gunshot to the head or a body hanging from the rafters.  And yes, that is how it is in real life. No one knows about the victim’s intent to die until it’s much too late. I am never prepared at the movies just like I was not prepared in real life.

Because it is traumatic for those of us who have lost a loved one to suicide or “unnatural causes,” we dread being surprised by it all over again at the movies. I think I will see about starting a website that lists movies that have suicides and rapes in them. It would be emotionally beneficial for any of us who would rather avoid such as that.

The movie was good but I did not like the ending. Of course, it was a Hollywood type of ending…no mention of God or Heaven…nothing spiritually weighty…not spiritual at all, really. I just don’t find it real enough because of that big omission. The only real thing that I came away with was the pain it inflicts on a person who has lost a  loved one…a son…a child….to the desire to die.  At least they left the mother’s affections alone.




  1. Very interesting Dale. I don’t see many movies, but this is one that I will not be going to! I highly doubt anybody that lost a loved one through suicide, would be writing a script that shows the mother “all in” –and not doing everything possible to prevent the child’s suicide. How anguished mothers are in real life–after “it” happens–and how they wish they could have done “something” to prevent the tragedy. In that movie…to stand by after your child fully states his “intention”– and be “ok” with that? I sincerely doubt that would ever happen! “Only in the movies…” Can’t moviegoers make positive movies any more? All the dark themes are getting so prevalent it is very disheartening to me. Even TV ads for “dark” shows or movies are getting very upsetting to me!

    Love to you and Brandon,



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