Drew Barrymore and Toni Collette are London-dwelling besties-from-girlhood, now married, circling 40 and navigating disappointments and mortality in Miss You Already.
Barrymore is adorable but one-dimensional as sunny Jess, who longs to start a family with partner Jago (Submarine’s Paddy Considine). Her infertility woes evaporate as forever pal Milly (Collette, good here in the more complex role), a mother of two with former bad boy rocker Kit (Dominic Cooper of The History Boys), gets a breast cancer diagnosis.
Director Catherine Hardwicke shoots with creativity, finding a way to make London look surprisingly colourful and dreamy, even on the gloomiest day. Pity the Twilight and Thirteen director couldn’t work similar magic with Morwenna Banks’ abysmal script.
Collette brings a fierce performance as a former (but not completely reformed) wild child forced to grow up by her illness. Milly’s not always likeable and her narcissistic streak helps Miss You Already get to interesting places. Regrettably, that’s derailed by frequent clichés.
R.E.M. replaces Bette Midler’s anthem in this Beaches-like weeper, but the tears will flow just the same among pals sharing a bucket of popcorn and a multiplex bonding session.