An underwhelming ‘After'thought
Courtesy of International Business Times
Based on a popular One Direction Wattpad fan fiction of the same name, “After” is a teen romance movie with themes of love, lust and heartache. Hardin Scott, who represents Harry Styles, is a bad boy who catches feelings for a sweet, innocent girl named Tessa Young. Though a similar plot to many movies of this genre, “After” somehow managed to ruin teen romance films for good.
Wattpad is an app on which users can post their stories, which nine times out of 10 are teen fan fiction. “After” is not the only Wattpad story to receive some traction. The popular Netflix movie “The Kissing Booth” was originally a Wattpad story turned film, and whether or not that movie was good is a story for another day.
“After” was an 80-chapter series created in 2013 by Anna Todd. The story told the journey of a girl by the name of Tessa who locks eyes with Styles. Although the story focuses on Styles, other members of the band were also featured.
It was clearly a very popular series, receiving more than one billion views. It then went on to become a five-part book series. Soon after, it, unfortunately, moved to the big screen.
For legal purposes, the band members’ names had to be changed; however, viewers of the movie can most likely pick out the characters that represent the members of the band.
A huge issue regarding the movie was its content versus its audience. This teen romance movie was targeted toward young, impressionable girls. After all, it was based on One Direction. Yet, its content was very sexual.
Though one could argue that those who liked One Direction during its peak back in 2011 are much older now, there are plenty of young girls who are fans of the band and the book. It’s safe to say the creators of this film knew their target audience were young girls, which would explain why the theater was filled with them.
As for the acting in this movie, it was rough. To be honest, it just added to the corniness of it all. Selma Blair, who played Tessa’s mother, had a particularly bad performance. The times when she had to be a concerned, upset mother could have been confused with a nonchalant parent. The bad boy character, who was supposed to embody Hardin, was not really there. It seemed very forced and unnatural.
It’s also worth mentioning that though Hero Fiennes-Tiffin (Hardin) is from the United Kingdom and played a British character in the film, his accent sounded more fake than Josephine Langford’s (Tessa), who is Australian and played an American character. They could have recast his role. It was, overall, a tacky performance from the entire cast.
After all is said and done, save your 10 bucks and see another movie. This movie should seriously consider advertising itself as a comedy because it’s hard not to laugh at how bad it is. It’s clear that the creators of “After” should have put some more thought into it before its making.