“All The Bright Places” Is Sad, Beautiful and Necessary

Finally! After waiting for many years, the adaptation for “All The Bright Places” is out on Netflix and it’s pretty amazing. Jennifer Niven, the author of the book, worked on the script alongside with Liz Hannah, while the movie was directed by Brett Haley.

The film tells the story of Finch and Violet (Justice Smith and Elle Fanning). They meet each other at a bridge’s ledge, that later we find out it was the same bridge where Violet’s sister died. Because of this event, Finch finds himself interest in Violet and tries to convince her to do a geography project with him so they can visit some wonders of Indiana.

Since I’m a super fan of the book, I’ll also talk about some differences between the movie and the book in this review, so watch out for spoilers.

I’ve absolutely loved to see the wonders, specially the rollercoaster one, and an interesting fact is that it actually exists and you can visit it if you ever go to Indiana. Actually, the book comes with the name and the address of all the wonders, even the ones that didn’t make into the movie, like the World's Largest Paintball.

Elle Fanning and Justice Smith have a truly amazing chemistry and it was fun to see them visiting the places and falling in love with each other. There’s one thing that bothered me a little. They didn’t explain very deeply what was going on with Finch. They didn’t even explain the main reason of the post-its, that they were a reason for him to stay awake. I mean, I’ve adored to see the references, like the “lovely” one, but I think they should’ve given this a little more attention. Also, in the book, it is mentioned that Finch may be bipolar but this is only implicit on the film.

A lot of people that didn’t read the book came to talk to me like “I liked the movie, but I didn’t understand what happened to him”. I didn’t feel that, I think that even with the lack of facts about him and his family (that plays a much bigger role in the book), you can understand him and his actions, it is just a little shallower. But I may feel this way because of the book effect, that allows me to have a deeper connection with Finch.

I think it is a beautiful story that talks about a really important and hard subject in a very delicate way. And it’s necessary that we talk about depression and mental health so we can understand and take care of ourselves. If you need help, talk to someone, don’t keep that to yourself. And if you think that there’s something wrong with someone that is close to you, talk to this person and be there for them. 

As a bonus, I’m gonna leave you with the song that Finch wrote to Violet in the movie. It is a totally different version and she finds the lyrics in the church after his death. Check it out:

You make me happy, whenever you're around I'm safe inside your smile.

You make me handsome, whenever I feel my nose just seems a bit too round.

You make me special, and God knows I've longed to be that kind of guy to have around.

You make me love you, and that could be the greatest thing my heart was ever fit to do.

You make me lovely, and it’s so lovely to be lovely to the one I love.” ("All The Bright Places" book)

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The article above was edited by Laura Okida.

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