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After (2019)

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After (2019)
After Poster.jpeg
Oh look, its Fifty Shades of Grey 2.0, but even worse.
Genre: Romantic
Drama
Directed By: Jenny Gage
Produced By: Anna Todd
Jennifer Gibgot
Mark Canton
Courtney Solomon
Written By: Susan McMartin
Tamara Chestna
Jenny Gage
Based On: After by Anna Todd
Starring: Josephine Langford
Hero Fiennes-Tiffin
Cinematography: Adam Silver
Tom Betterton
Distributed By: Aviron Pictures
Release Date: April 8, 2019 (Los Angeles)
April 12, 2019 (United States)
Runtime: 106 minutes
Country: United States
Language: English
Budget: $14 million
Box Office: $69.7 million
Franchise: After
Prequel: Before
Sequel: After We Collided


After is a 2019 American romantic drama film starring Josephine Langford and Hero Fiennes Tiffin. It is based on the 2014 new adult fiction novel of the same name written by Anna Todd, originally released as a fanfiction on Wattpad. The screenplay is written by Susan McMartin, Tamara Chestna, and Jenny Gage. The film stars Josephine Langford and Hero Fiennes Tiffin, and follows an inexperienced teenage girl who begins to romance a mysterious student during her first months of college. The cast includes Selma Blair, Inanna Sarkis, Shane Paul McGhie, Pia Mia, Khadijha Red Thunder, Dylan Arnold, Samuel Larsen, Jennifer Beals, and Peter Gallagher in supporting roles.

Plot

Tessa Young is a dedicated student, dutiful daughter and loyal girlfriend to her high school sweetheart. Entering her first semester of college, Tessa's guarded world opens up when she meets Hardin Scott, a mysterious and brooding rebel who makes her question all she thought she knew about herself -- and what she wants out of life.

Why It's An Afterthought

  1. This film has literally no good reason to exist, as it is based on a Wattpad fanfiction that's based on Harry Styles, which got turned into a series of books that can be found in real stores. (Yes, really).
  2. Its a ripoff of both Twilight films and Fifty Shades films. Which both said franchises are already terrible, so that wasn't an accomplishment. Not only that, it also suffers the problems.
  3. This is yet another popular movie based on a equally bad popular book which glorifies abusive relationships. So overall, it is very unoriginal.
  4. Too many unlikable characters that you wouldn't stand for:
    • Tessa is very generic and unlikable female protagonist that wants to get more out of life by finding a bad boy as a lover. Even if it meant disrespecting her mother, breaking up with her boyfriend, and remain ignorant of Hardin's personality.
    • Hardin Scott is an incredibly unlikeable character. He is yet another toxic partner who did not even take basic emotions to play while regarding his scheme for Tessa, and he also never thought of what the bet would do to her emotionally and if she actually fell in love.
      • According to him; "love is like a switch where you can turn it on or off.", as it sends out a bad message that you can manipulate a person's feelings that easy.
      • Hardin's name was also unoriginal that his character was based on the real life One Direction member Harry Styles. Which is ironic that this is a self-insert x Harry Styles fanfiction.
  5. Bad and explicit sex scenes, which it would fit to a R-rating instead of a PG-13 one.
  6. Poor grasp of the source material, despite the book, and even the Wattpad story, not being good in the first place.
  7. As did the books, it received unnecessary sequels that are just as somewhat bad as this, and has never been given any improvement over the first film. In fact, there are 5 books in the series (counting the prequel Before), After Ever Happy and Before currently getting film adaptations in 2022 and 2023 respectively.
  8. The dialogue is cheesy, corny and terrible that feels phoned in, notably "She took my hand and led me out of the darkness and showed me whatever our souls are made of, hers and mine are the same" and "My life before him was so simple and decided. And now after him, there's just, after".
  9. Very poor and weak acting.

Redeeming Qualities

  1. Decent cinematography.
  2. The soundtrack is good to listen to.

Reception

After receivied largely negative reviews from critics and audiences, who felt its screenplay and narrative glamourized abusive relationships. On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 18% based on 35 reviews with an average rating of 3.57/10. The site's critical consensus reads "Tepid and tired, After's fun flourishes are let down by its generic story.". The film has a weighted average of 30 out of 100 on Metacritic, based on eight critics, indicating "generally unfavorable reviews." Audiences polled by CinemaScore gave the film an average grade of "B" on an A+ to F scale, while those at PostTrak gave it 2.5 out of 5 stars.

Critics found the screenplay at fault, with Owen Gleiberman of Variety writing that After was an "innocuous teen pulp soap opera that flirts with 'danger' but, in fact, keeps surprising you with how mild and safe and predictable it turns out to be.". John Fink of The Film Stage echoed this sentiment, commenting that "the talented cast is burdened by a dead on arrival screenplay that waters down what could have been an intoxicating tale of first love," though he noted the film was "beautifully shot" and "occasionally aesthetically pleasing."

Trivia

  • Paramount Pictures was originally going to distributed this film.

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