DVD Review: How I Live Now

Angst. Angst. Angst.

Daisy (Saoirse Ronan) is an angsty teen sent to England to stay with her aunt and cousins during a time when World War III is approaching. She's rude, disinterested, the only thing that seems to catch her attention is her good looking older cousin, Eddie. (George McKay) Okay, they're cousins by marriage, but I'm not going to stop making fun of this. Her aunt leaves for Geneva, then soon after a nuclear bomb goes off in nearby London, and an American consulate employee tracks Daisy down (because they do that?) and gives her a ticket home. However, she declares her undying love for her cousin, and burns the ticket. She holes up in a barn with Eddie, and his younger brother and sister, Isaac and Piper. (Tom Holland and Harley Bird) Soon, army forces find their hide out, separate them, and send the girls to one camp and the boys to another. Daisy vows to get back to Eddie soon.

I think the biggest mistake a book to movie adaptation can make is assume all it's viewers have read the source material. That wasn't the case for me. So Daisy spending roughly 48 hours with her cousin, fucking him, then falling in love with him felt really extreme and honestly kind of ruined the rest of the tone for me. Daisy hears voices and takes pills, which to me means she probably went to some sort of therapy, but none of that is never addressed. She thinks her dad doesn't care for her, but she never elaborates. 

How people would handle themselves in a WWIII scenario is fascinating, and Ronan is a more than capable actress (Harley Bird was a wonderful little spitfire too) but the whole teen love thing really overwhelmed what could've been an interesting story.

Then there's one other thing that bothered me, and I'd love to get my male reader's opinions on this. There's a few scenes that imply rape. In fact, Daisy and Piper escape attempted rape scenarios TWICE. This film (and others) give the impression that if society failed, most men would turn into insane rapists because ain't nobody got time for consensual sex. It offends me greatly, because I think the men in my life are better than that. But does it offend you, as men? That men are portrayed as not being able to keep it in their damn pants? Doesn't that bother you? 

Recommended: No

Grade: C

Memorable Quote: "This is how I live now." - Daisy (Soairse Ronan)


  1. I did like this movie even though I haven't read the book but I can also see why you wouldn't. I enjoyed how it mixed some different genres and I'm always fascinated by WW3 movies. Anyhow, you're right about the rape scenarios but I think the point could be that some people that normally wouldn't dare to rape girls because of police etc. would do it in a time where the police has other things to do.

    1. I remember your review, I threw this in my Netflix queue immediately after reading it. :) It still seems ridiculous that people would resort to rape. Just ask for sex, man. ask!

  2. I'm not so much offended as I am disappointed at the lazy or cliched storytelling. Rape is probably the filmmaker's way of portraying the chaos and lawlessness of WWIII, but would civil people really behave that way if WWIII broke out? I'd like to think not.

  3. I was thinking of watching this before, but seeing as how you painted the picture, now I'm reluctant to. The concept of WWIII is interesting, but I think I'd rather see a different take on it.

    1. It's really disappointing. Too much teen love story.


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