For Maddy (Amandla Stenberg), who just turned 18, life is fine but monotonous. Due to a rare disease that leaves her with a compromised immune system, she’s kept in a house that’s designed to prevent infection, with in-person contact kept to her mother (Anika Noni Rose), her nurse (Ana de la Reguera), and few others. But when Olly (Nick Robinson) moves next door, he’s smitten with her the moment he sees her through a window – and the feeling is mutual. As the two begin to know each other, they’ll change each other’s lives forever.
Is Everything, Everything predictable? It’s based on a YA title, so, yes. The immensity of the feelings both Maddy and Olly have are, as they tend to be, huge for these teens. There is, of course, also a twist coming about Maddy’s health that all but the most ignorant of viewers will see coming about five minutes into the film. Red flags abound.
And yet, Everything, Everything does have its charms. Those charms mainly lie with the performances from Stenberg and Robinson, who manage to take these loosely sketched characters and give them some depth. While the characters do stupid and impulsive things, due to Maddy’s illness, there’s a level of caution and risk that they both seem to take into consideration (for the most part). Even when the risks they take do seem foolish, it’s easy to understand why they might take those risks, and again, that’s due in large part to the performances. Everything, Everything might be predictable, but there’s a charm to it that’s undeniable.