The Jakarta Post
Five Feet Apart is a romantic drama about two teenagers who suffer from a genetic disease falling in love in a hospital.
Directed by Justin Baldoni the story is based on the novel Five Feet Apart by Rachael Lippincott.
Stella (Haley Lu Richardson) suffers from B. Cepacia and receives treatment at the Saint Grace Hospital. On her personal YouTube channel, she shares her story and information regarding her disease with the rest of the world. Since her lungs are at only 50 percent function bacteria from other B. Cepacia patients could kill her. Therefore, she must stay 6 feet away from other sick people, never being able to touch or hug her best friend Poe, who is also receiving treatment at the hospital.
A new patient Will (Cole Sprouse) arrives. Handsome and always cracking sarcastic jokes, he is lazy and does not follow his treatment regime. Control freak Stella starts supporting him, so they begin taking their meds together via video chats.
Since Stella's sickness has taken so much from her life she decides to steal something back: 1 foot. After finding a billiard cue that is exactly 5 feet long the teenagers go on their first date. With the characters finally being able to connect and almost touch each other, at least the end of the cue, the audience becomes aware of the importance of touch.
The story is not only about their love, but also fear of loss, unexpected death, trust, lungs, lights and the fact that their love could kill them one day. Cole is a romantic, and wins Stella's heart by drawing pictures of her and giving her other surprises.
Still, the story follows the typical Hollywood scheme: two people that at first do not like each other fall in love and when everything seems to be perfect there is a big emotional drama. Whether the movie's end is a happy one is all a question of perspective.
Still, its message is clear: Life’s too short to waste a second. (sop/kes)