“After” Movie Review

Back in the day, I used to read a lot of fanfiction. I read books all the time, but fanfiction was different. Places like Fanfiction.net and Wattpad dominated the scene around 2011.

However, the thing about fanfiction is that it could get pretty real. And by real, I mean fanfiction about One Direction could eventually become published and then turned into a movie. 

So yeah, that happened.

I was never into One Direction (in that part of my life I was still a baby emo), so I never knew about this story up until very recently. Flashback to 2013, when One Direction was everywhere and their impending breakup was nowhere to be seen. Well, during this time, One Direction fanfiction was also center stage. Enter Anna Todd, author of the titular book “After:” a fanfiction reimagining Harry Styles as a bad-boy-college-student and his girlfriend Tessa Young.

Fast forward to April 2019, the fanfiction was made into a movie. Personally, I have never read the book, so I had no idea that it was a 1D fanfiction in the first place. However, it becomes more obvious when you realize that they changed the name of the main character, which was originally Harry, to Hardin Scott, the name you hear over and over again in the movie. 

The movie follows Tessa, a college student in her freshman year, who is on her own for the first time, leaving behind her overbearing mother and high school senior boyfriend. After a very creepy and post-twilight run-in with Hardin, Tess officially meets him at a party her roommates bring her to. Now I don’t want to spoil the ending of the movie, but I will say that game of truth or dare that they play is very important. 

Soon after they meet, Tessa and Hardin start dating and everything seems to be going well for them. However, not every movie can have a happily-ever-after — I’m still not spoiling it, though!

This movie was a trip, like literally a trip. The only other Wattpad original movie I’ve watched was The Kissing Booth, and that’s a whole other review for another day. Overall, the movie wasn’t bad when you don’t look at it as anything other than what it is: a Wattpad fanfiction. However, I really didn’t like it (especially the ending), because it was so predictable. I also hated that they really expected me to believe that a guy named “Hardin” was supposed to be edgy. Seriously?

All in all, I’ll never forget my cringy fanfiction phase. Fanfiction is an amazing way for people to get their stories out. It’s not for everyone, but don’t knock it till you try it.