Why are we not just reading the After books?
The era of erotic novels being turned into movies has seemingly come to an end now as fans and viewers are more inclined to watch stories that make a lasting impact in opposition to watching those driven by sex. However, with time, there always come some shows and movies that have one and only selling point – the lovemaking scenes it has. The films from the After movie series are just that and its second instalment, After We Collided is no different.
After We Collided is based on the second novel of the After series and narrates a follow-up of Tessa and Hardin’s relationship after what happened in the first part. Tessa is heartbroken to learn that Hardin only dated her for a bet and that he was tasked by his friends to make her fall for him. She breaks up with Hardin and cuts all contact with him before she starts working for a publishing house.
As she navigates between making a name for herself and working on her future goals, she finds herself attracted to her co-worker – Trevor. However, Hardin is persistent about winning Tessa over as he tries to treat her better than he had in the past. This movie is not all that bad, plot-wise but the way it has been executed in the movie is a shame.
Tessa and Hardin have a fight, they sulk for a while, Hardin apologises and promises to be better for her, they have sex and the cycle continues. With them fighting and making up all throughout the series, one is bound to get tired. As Trevor was introduced as a colleague of Tessa’s, I hate the fact that Dylan Sprouse was not used to the best of his potential.
His participation in the movie was as good as that of an extra and it did not give viewers any depth as to how Tessa gained her confidence back all thanks to his help in the books. Most of the After books were long and detailed which is lost in the movies.
Just as most movie adaptations of popular books go, many plot points were missed and Hardin’s friends were completely ignored in the movie series, especially Zed and Tessa’s storyline which I am still unhappy about. After We Collided tries to jump from one plot point to another and eventually falls flat due to the mundane performances of most of the supporting cast.
It does not help how some actors associated with the project are recast in the movies that follow making viewers feel unattached to the characters. Hero Fiennes Tiffin does a pretty good job at playing Hardin but his character is just not a good person which makes it hard for viewers to justify most of his actions.
Viewers who have read the books know why Hardin gets so angry when things don’t go his way. Since readers know what trauma Hardin faced as a child, the novels make it easier for readers to sympathize with him. Had the viewers looked at the books as a whole and then written their screenplay based on that, the story would have fared pretty well.
Showing viewers that a younger Hardin went through a traumatic incident, it would have been much easier for viewers to understand his dependency on alcohol and his anger issues. With regard to Tessa’s character as well, showing no background of her relationship with her father, viewers are just introduced to his character all of a sudden.
It would have really helped for us to see how a younger Tessa was close to her dad who one day just decides to up and leave her with her mother. The OST to After We Collided is somehow bearable and so is the cinematography.
In this movie, just like the last, Hardin and Tessa are stuck like a broken record. They’re hiding things from each other, fighting, and then having make-up sex after that. After We Collided is just as chaotic as the last After movie and it does not help that there is a fifth After movie coming out this year which promises to be just as chaotic as the others have been.
Verdict - 4/10