Jess (Drew Barrymore) and Milly (Toni Collette) have been friends for pretty much their entire lives, despite or maybe because their not inconsiderable differences. While Jess is trying to have children with her husband Jago (Paddy Considine), Milly, who lives with her husband Kit (Dominic Cooper) and their kids and is successful in her career, is diagnosed with breast cancer. Now they both have entirely new challenges to face.
Miss You Already is like a modern Beaches: a wonderful, touching film with complex, strong, female protagonists that unabashedly centers women in its narrative.
I don’t like going around dividing the world into male and female, nor do I like doing it with films or books or whatever. But if ever there was something like a female film, Miss You Already would be it. That doesn’t mean that men couldn’t enjoy or understand or appreciate it. But it does mean that the film is made for women, by women and about women. And we get way too few of those.
So that in itself is already a reason to celebrate. But fortunately it’s not the only one. Jess and Milly were great characters and Toni Collette and Drew Barrymore really brought them and their friendship to life. They get to be flawed and different and still to love each other unconditionally, even when they don’t like each other all the time. They get to fight and to make up. Their friendship is like the friendships I know in my life (even if, of course, more dramatic, stylized and moviefied – the emotional core feels real).
The movie goes by quickly and is always entertaining. It made me laugh and cry, sometimes both at the same time. It’s only at the very end that they hit a slightly weird note, but it’s so small and short that it’s easily ignored. [SPOILERS] Jess starts talking about how much Milly’s daughter resembles Milly and how she will always have a friend in her and that was just ever so slightly creepy, like she was grooming Milly’s daughter to be her new best friend. But then I was also rewriting the ending in my head, making Jess, Jago and Kit shack up together and creating a beautiful three-parented patchwork family, so I could wave that weird bit away and focus on my headcanon with ease. [/SPOILERS]
I’m still sniffling a little just thinking about the film and I’ll probably have to watch it again soon. In the meantime, you should too.