The tale of falling in and out of love is truly special in a wonderfully made stage-to-screen adaptation of Jason Robert Brown’s ‘The Last Five Years.’
Yes, Anna Kendrick, 29, stars in yet another movie musical. However, this one isn’t filled with princes and witches — or even a cappella groups for that matter. Instead, The Last Five Years covers the beginning and end of a relationship from two very different perspectives, including her on-screen husband and Broadway vet, Jeremy Jordan, 30.
‘The Last Five Years’: Anna Kendrick Sings Her Heart Out
If you’re anything like me, you’re desperate for anything other than Fifty Shades of Grey to see in theaters this Valentine’s Day. Thankfully, you have the option of The Last Five Years.
It is no surprise that Anna Kendrick’s quirky charm shines in this tale that she once described as “Divorce: The Musical.”
The film opens with a tearful Cathy Hiatt (Kendrick) realizing that her husband, Jamie Wellerstein (Jordan), has finally packed his bags and left her behind.
Anna’s emotional performance immediately pulls you in, and even those unfamiliar with the stage production of this slightly depressing musical find themselves desperate to know how Cathy ended up like this.
The story then unfolds, slowly but surely, but in two completely different directions.
Bringing ‘TL5Y’ From Stage To Screen
In it’s own very unique way, both characters tell their sides of the story separately. Cathy shares their romance from end to beginning, while Jamie tells it from start to finish.
This is exactly how the play was written, and in that sense the film stays true to it’s original content. However, minor dialogues were added in to better help non-theater loving audiences understand what’s really happening.
Unfortunately, this is one of the film’s biggest flaws: while it’s built-in theater cult audience will adore it, it’s possible that audiences just expecting a casual movie musical may not be able to comprehend the character’s two different dynamics as they switch back and forth with each and every song.
Jeremy & Anna’s Chemistry Is On Point
One thing that truly makes this musical special is how Anna and Jeremy seem to really be falling in and out of love right before your very eyes.
Of course, Anna is an absolute dream to watch on screen no matter what role she has embarked on, but the real surprise comes in the form of Jeremy.
Most people know him as the resident bad boy on Smash (RIP), but he reveals another, more charming and overachieving side of himself in The Last Five Years. In fact, it’s impossible not to fall in love with his Jamie — even as Cathy reveals the harsh truth about how their relationship falls to pieces over the span of five years.
The chemistry between Cathy and Jamie really takes center stage during two very critical scenes in the film, the first being where their timelines finally cross paths which is also the moment in their relationship in which they become engaged.
The second? SPOILER ALERT — it’s the end.
Once again Cathy and Jamie’s characters have crossed paths, but it’s Jamie at the end of their relationship and Cathy at the very beginning. As he sings a sorrowful goodbye to his wife as their relationship ends, a much younger Cathy, the one Jamie fell in love with five years before, is saying goodbye to Jamie after their first date.
The Last Five Years is a special film, and a much needed breath of fresh air that shows there reminds you even the most beautiful of love stories can end in heart-wrenching tragedy.
Be sure to check out the film in select theaters starting Feb. 13, or you can instantly download it from iTunes to watch over and over again!
Tell us, HollywoodLifers — Do you think you’ll see The Last Five Years in theaters over Valentine’s Day weekend? If you’ve seen the film already, be sure to leave your thoughts in the comments below!
— Lauren Cox