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Drew Barrymore & Toni Collette in Miss You Already

Drew Barrymore & Toni Collette in Miss You Already

Tissues are a must for any that go and see Miss you Already. The film is based around the ongoing friendship between whirlwind Milly (Tony Collette) and hippie Jess (Drew Barrymore). Since childhood, the two have been as thick as thieves, Jess always following in Milly’s wake, best friends, no matter what!

When Milly, a mother of two, discovers she has breast cancer things begin to spiral out of control. Jess is there for her friend, but Milly seems to have lost all sight of anyone around her, as Jess puts it she becomes a “cancer bully”.

Anyone who thinks, “I know that story”, is correct; Miss you Already has more than a few similarities with the 1988 Beaches, staring Bette Midler as C.C. Bloom and Barbara Hershey as Hillary Whitney – just with a few role reversals.

And like Beaches, Miss you Already relies on the tight bond that women form, deep unconditional love with lots of humour thrown in – men are really only arm-candy.

Set in modern day London it does seem a little odd that both main characters are not English, and while Collette’s British accent is good, Barrymore’s absence of one is explained away. But Collette and Barrymore are expertly cast and the chemistry between the two is evident.

Both male leads however hold up the flag as Dominic Cooper partners up with Collette, as her saintly husband Kit, and Paddy Considine teams up with Barrymore as her life partner Jago.

Director Catherine Hardwicke is brave enough to not gloss over the gory bits and shots of mastectomy scars show us how rarely, if ever, we see, the reality of what cancer means to so many. This paired with the humour of how Milly tells her children about cancer and chemotherapy treatment Miss you Already really does show how cancer effects everyone around the person suffering.

Not knowing what to say or what to do is a bit part of how everyone around Milly reacts to her illness. Acceptance and humour is how Jess copes with the situation, Milly’s husband Kit seems less able to find a way to communicate. Milly’s mum, a vain TV actress, endearingly captured by Jacqueline Bisset, bumbles around never knowing what to do but always wanting to help – and in the end she has her shining moment, much to her own surprise.

Beautifully shot, the moor scenes in particular, Hardwicke howeveroverdoes the close-ups at times. Both Collette and Barymore are excellent actors and their skill would have allowed for a little bit of a distance.

So, even if Miss you Already is a bit Beach-y and not necessarily all that new, it is a modern day portrayal of what cancer does to lives. It is well worth a few packets of tissues and a perfect film for a night out with the girls. But men should watch it too, as they can learn a thing or two about women.

So if you don’t have any plans tonight, the Irish Cancer Society has organised a Miss You Already Special Fundraising Preview Screening today (Monday 21st of September) at 6.30pm at the Light House Cinema, Smithfield Square. Grab your best friends and treat yourself to a great night out. Tickets are €25 each, which includes goodie bag and a drink at the pre-screening reception.