Based on a novel, Me Before You is a romantic drama about an unfolding relationship between two unlikely companions. Will Traynor (Sam Claflin) was once a high-powered financier who was rising quickly in his career, but he has been left paralysed from the neck down after a motorcycle collision. Will needs a carer and decides to take a chance on Lou, a young and optimistic former waitress (Emilia Clarke), despite her lack of experience.
Although Will treats Lou quite rudely at first, they soon grow closer and develop intimate feelings for each other. After a while, Lou discovers that Will intends to travel to Switzerland to be euthanased because of his disability and continuous pain. Heartbroken by Will’s decision, Louisa sets out to change his mind and attempts to convince him that life is indeed worth living.
Living with a disability; suicide; euthanasia; love and relationships
Me Before You has limited violence. For example:
- A man is hit by a motorcycle. This is only heard and not visibly shown.
- A character appears to have attempted suicide at some time and has wrist scars that suggest this.
- There are some verbal arguments between characters.
Content that may disturb children
A male character is paralysed and frequently experiences pain as a result of his condition.
Me Before You is about euthanasia and the decision of a person with disability to end his life.
Children in this age group might be disturbed by the themes of disability, suicide and euthanasia.
Younger viewers in this age group might also be disturbed by the idea of euthanasia.
Me Before You has some sexual references. For example:
- Characters talk about a woman’s fitted dress being ‘too booby’ and sexually revealing.
- Several characters have a discussion about how a person with quadriplegia might engage in sexual activity.
Alcohol, drugs and other substances
Me Before You shows some use of substances. For example:
- Characters drink socially.
- Characters use prescription medication.
Nudity and sexual activity
There is some sexual activity in Me Before You. For example:
- A couple are shown in bed together, kissing. Both characters are naked, but only the sides of their bodies are shown.
- The movie shows many other brief kisses.
Me Before You has some product placement, including Apple products, Subaru vehicles and Adidas products.
There is coarse language in Me Before You.
Ideas to discuss with your children
Me Before You is asad movie that touches on some serious themes, including the complex issue of euthanasia. There are also some sexual references and coarse language. The movie is more suitable for older teenagers and adults, and we don’t recommend it for viewers under 14 years. You’ll find there’s plenty to discuss with older teenagers.
Lou and Will present opposing views on the issues of living life with disability. Some viewers might be concerned that the movie shows disability in a negative way, but Louisa’s struggle to show Will that his life is worth living illustrates the human capacity for optimism and hope in otherwise tragic situations.
The movie also highlights the importance of close relationships and the significance of having compassionate and supportive people around during difficult times.
Values in Me Before You that you could reinforce with your children include:
- supporting people in making their own decisions, even if you believe them to be wrong
- making the most of every day, and valuing the time you have with loved ones and friends
- having compassion for people, and always attempting to look past initial impressions and stereotypes.