Netflix’s ‘All The Bright Places’ only half-lives up to hype

Written By Shannon Hartnett, Co-Opinions Editor

Netflix is back at it again with another teenage love story that rivals “The Fault in Our Stars” sob levels. Beware of sensitive issues if you find yourself wanting to watch this movie.

“All the Bright Places” is a new movie on Netflix that is based off of the book written by Jennifer Niven. Both the book and movie follow main characters Violet Markey and Theodore Finch as they navigate through mental health issues and high school at large.

For what it’s worth, the movie does a great job of staying true to the novel. However, it leaves fans of the book a little empty. The characters in the movie feel very flat when it comes to characterization. The book builds these complex characters that have an endless depth to them. While the plot does stay relatively the same, this development of the characters is the biggest let down when watching the movie.

Despite the lack of emotional connection to the characters, the movie is still a fair adaptation of a book that abolishes the stigmas against depression and suicide in teens. Clearly sensitive issues in today’s culture, “All the Bright Places” successfully dives into the feelings and situations of people with mental health issues. Each scene is an exploration of ways to conquer depression and transition into a happier and healthier state of mind.

As Violet mourns her sister, who died in a car accident, Theodore attempts to bring her back to reality. Theodore becomes invested in helping Violet, meanwhile everyone else around him struggles to understand what is going on with Theo himself.

There are some fairly beautiful scenes in the movie that show the relationship developing between two people who are hurting and searching for peace in their complicated lives. As the movie develops there are more and more heartbreaking scenes that viewers watch with the hope that they could reach out and help the characters.

The movie doesn’t have a happy ending. That is to be expected in tragic teenage love stories, but this one is so much more real compared to the average sappy movie. This movie hits close to home for lots of students and young kids trying to find where they fit in the world.

Even though the tear-jerking ending prompts immediate dislike for the movie, “All the Bright Places” finds a way to make sense of what to do as the characters go forward.