Directed by Marc Meyers
Starring: Harry Shum Jr, Jessica Rothe, Chrissie Fit, Ever Carradine, Jay Pharoah, Marielle Scott
Runtime: 91 Minutes
Rating: PG-13 (for brief language)
I started to think back on all the reviews we’ve done in the last 21 months. (Yes we are approaching 2 years!) I honestly can’t remember reviewing a romance film or a “chick flick” as most would call it. We’ve done romantic comedies, but never pure romance. I am usually quick to remember a bad film, one I loved, certain plot points, but this genre escaped me. Maybe it’s because the releases are limited but this week Rachel and I were off to see All My Life. She will say it was my choice….that’s debatable. I will admit, I was looking forward to the female lead (Jessica Rothe.) If you’ve seen Happy Death Day or Happy Death Day 2U she is the lead. It is also worth noting that this film is based on a true story. No, plot points weren’t picked from to create a film, this is a real story about real people.
Onto the film.
In typical romance fashion, I felt the movie opened rather cheesy. Guy meets Girl. Obviously. We meet Solomon Chau (Shum Jr.) who approaches Jennifer Carter (Rothe) in a sports bar. Chau and his wing-man proceed to talk to Carter and her friends and it doesn’t go well. Solomon wisely leaves the situation to grab drinks for the group and Jennifer follows. She makes a comment about which guy is he rooting for. Saying the “guy with no neck or the bald one.” (I could be misquoting it.) My date, Ms. Epperly laughed and said “I like her, that’s how I would describe it.) 100% true.
We then are treated with moments as the couple grows together. Again a tad cheesy, the music had a “lifetime” movie feel to it, but I expected that and it works. I want to get to, in my opinion, the most important line in the movie. Jennifer says time and time again, and in voiceovers that we all get an average of 27,375 days on this Earth. I think of life as in years or decades, we all think 50 is the start of over the hill. When we break it down, day by day, that’s heavy. I think of wasted days, months, years, and if anything this film makes you appreciate the day to day so much more (especially with how 2020 is going.)
Now onto the true part of this true story. Solomon gets sick. He has liver cancer and things don’t look good. You see a man who is a wonderful chef, a great friend, and companion with his life being taken from him. The positive in all this is the main cast. In any film with romance if the leads chemistry doesn’t work, you aren’t invested. Thankfully both leads
here shine. Rothe is an excellent actress and I feel she helped alleviate this story (the plot is thin) both character’s inner circles have their quirks that worked well overall. However, the positives stop here.
Even though this is a true story, and a simple google search will tell you how this story plays out, we still see cliché plot points. The story was more predictable than it should have been and forced you to be sad at times. No, neither of us cried. It’s hard to encourage you to see this film. It is sad, yes. However the message about the days we have, roughly 27,375 hits home. So in that regard I would see it, but neither of us loved this one. You can do worse than this film (Buddy Games) and it is good for a date night. Stay safe, wear your mask, and social distance with able.
3 stars out of 5
This writer’s opinion is their own and not the opinion of this newspaper