Based on the Young Adult novel Before I Die, this is a weepy drama that puts its cards on the table from the outset – Brighton teenager Tessa (Fanning) is dying of cancer. She’s compiled a list of teenage experiences she wants to have before she dies, including taking drugs, shoplifting and losing her virginity, so while her estranged parents – Paddy Considine as her caring dad, Olivia WIlliams as her more flighty, and often absent, mum – come to terms with her diagnosis, she sets about ticking items off the list. It’s handy, then, that hunky Adam (War Horse’s Irvine) moves in next door, as he seems a perfect candidate to help her achieve at least one thing on her list.
Casting talented American actress Fanning in the lead role may have angered fans of Jenny Downham’s English novel, but she’s superb in the role if you can ignore her rather generically plummy British accent. Irvine, too, is sweet as the rather too perfect love interest, but it is the two older stars, Considine and Williams, who steal the movie from the younger leads. As a stalwart dad devastated by his daughter’s disease, and the bleach-blond mum who just can’t handle it at all, they are both very moving, and even if the story is somewhat predictable, their heartfelt performances are bound to get you shedding a tear.
Is Now Is Good suitable for kids? Here are our parents’ notes...
Sensitive viewers may find the scene in which Tessa coughs up blood upsetting.