Me and Earl and the Dying Girl is completely undeserving of the cynicism often levelled at films with similar subject matter. It’s entirely sure of its quirky celluloid skin; defiantly utilising unsettlingly unusual camera angles and uncompromisingly sticking to narrator Greg’s (Thomas Mann) point of view.
Mann and Cooke’s performances are so open and natural that the screenplay’s intelligent interrogation of lofty themes – including death, fear, and intergenerational relationships – never feels preachy or condescending.
Instead of over-groomed Hollywood cyborgs, Me and Earl is refreshingly populated with real-looking youths who enliven lifelike characters feeling their way through new and difficult experiences.
With its unique voice, surprisingly capricious narrative, and well-judged balance of humour and issues-based drama, Me and Earl is a strong contender for best YA adaptation of 2015.
CAST: Thomas Mann, RJ Cyler, Olivia Cooke, Nick Offerman, Connie Britton
DIRECTOR: Alfonso Gomez-Rejon
WRITER: Jesse Andrews (novel and screenplay)
SYNOPSIS: High schooler Greg, who spends most of his time making parodies of classic movies with his co-worker Earl, finds his outlook forever altered after befriending a classmate who has just been diagnosed with cancer.