This is a capsule review. A full review will be posted when the film is released into theatres.
We take for granted that any movie that can be described as a “love story” inherently involves romance between two lovers, but that definition is broadening as more perspectives are being more widely represented in film. Miss You Already is a love story, but it’s not about the love between couples, but between a couple of women who have been best friends since childhood.
Toni Collette and Drew Barrymore play the women, portraying one of those long-term friendships that has its ups and downs, its hot periods and cold periods, but the type whose longevity speaks volumes. It’s a rare thing to see on screen, this type of relationship commonly described by phrases like “we can be away from each other for a long time but when we’re together, it’s like we never left.”
Also like life, the crux of this movie, and of these characters’ lives, takes place when they’re apart, pursuing vastly different things, yet both circling back around to one another. The wrench thrown into their relationship, the turmoil that befalls their love story, is when Milly (Collette) is diagnosed with cancer, while Jess (Barrymore) learns that after much trying, she is pregnant. This comes as sort of a reversal of their trajectories, and their responses as individuals and as friends to these circumstances are carried out in a way that is believable and consistent with both of their characters, maddening as it may be at times.
While parts of the film may ring cheesy, it never becomes overly sitcom-y, and always seems to be coming from a genuine place. Tears may feel cheap to some, but for me, they felt earned by director Catherine Hardwicke and screenwriter Morwenna Banks. Perhaps it’s the type of movie you bring your own baggage into.
A love story between two childhood friends, Miss You Already overcomes some of its tackier moments with scenes that are genuine and touching.