In 1988, Emma Morley (played by Anne Hathaway) and Dexter Mayhew (by Jim Sturgess) are in the same year at Edinburgh University. On their Graduation Day, during celebrations all their friends pair-off and although they don’t know each other very well, they are left behind to carouse. They spend the night together and the next morning, although Dex wants to flee, he stays longer than planned so he doesn’t hurt Emma’s feelings. It is July 15th. After University, Emma and Dex keep in contact and we observe as their lives twist and turn for two decades. Dex is a party-boy who has had a priviledged upbringing and he soon lands himself a television role. He spends most of his years lurching from one disaster to another – and along the way he messes up most of his significant relationships. Smart and beautiful Emma dreams of becoming a writer, but successes don’t come easily for her and her life doesn’t progress quite as well as she had planned. Through the ensuing years (to present day) we revisit both of them on 15th July to observe the status of their lives.
This movie is a straightforward romance, with which you could easily while away an hour or two – but it’s not quite enough for me. There is potential for it to be much more. The role of Dex’s mother (by Patricia Clarkson) could have been developed much further, as her involvement in the story should have been more impactful. Dex’s party lifestyle is depicted, but it’s pedestrian, as it the way he is portrayed as he faces the challenges in his life. Emma’s disappointment at her life is rather superficially treated also – and none of their relatiohships are particularly explored. Anne Hathaway is nice as Emma and Jim Sturgess is fine as Dex – they do make a very nice combination when they spend time together and there is a nice chemistry between them. Overall, this movie is okay.
The movie is adapted from the novel by David Nicholls.
Made in 2011. Directed by Lone Scherfig