‘Five Feet Apart’ a sombre dedication to persons living with cystic fibrosis

Movie a throwback to 'The Fault in Our Stars'


Starring: Haley Lu Richardson, Cole Sprouse, Moisés Arias, Parminder Nagra, Kimberly Hébert Gregory

Release date: March 15

Stella has cystic fibrosis. That means she spends most of her life living in a hospital, trying to avoid getting treated for lung infections. But the good news is that Stella is on a priority waiting list for a lung transfer.

Which means she must do everything by the book — take her medicines on time, follow the doctor’s orders, etc. And like every good girl, Stella’s curiosity about life and rule breaking is heightened when she meets Will. Will is also a cystic fibrosis patient, currently on a drug trial at the hospital. Unlike Stella, Will doesn’t like to live by the rules. He knows tomorrow is not promised for him, so he makes every day count.

While Stella is immediately annoyed by Will’s charismatic behaviour, she eventually befriends him. This friendship is hard for the two, as cystic fibrosis patients are required to stay at least six feet apart to avoid cross-infecting each other. But when Stella’s fellow CF patient and best friend, Poe, dies, Stella who is heartbroken, realises there might be a point to Will’s way of living after all.

Stella decides to fight back the rules and take one foot (of the six-feet apart rule) back. She, therefore, comes up with a new rule where she and Will stay five feet apart, using the ends of a pool cue as measure. With little time, limited hope and an already written destiny, the star-crossed young lovers decide to live life on their own terms.

The film takes a brave stance in highlighting the lives of cystic fibrosis patients. The idea of the actual possibility that this storyline could be the lives of two young patients somewhere in the world is heart-wrenching.

But other than that, the film offers nothing new. At least nothing we haven’t seen in the 2014 romantic drama, The Fault in Our Stars. The only upside is that they managed to showcase the talents of the two young stars. Haley Lu Richardson and Cole Sprouse make a name for themselves as serious up and coming actors with a range. The film is directed by Jane the Virgin star Justin Baldoni.

Star rating: 3/5 stars