Midnight Sun follows in the footsteps of many other romance movies before it. There seems to be a sort of formula that these types of movies follow. Usually they will introduce a romance with a main character that is known to die before the end of the movie, then they will make you fall in love with these two people struggling against the harsh realities of the world. Just when you start to believe maybe love can win, they rip the witty easy-to-love protagonist from the viewer, all for the purpose of beating at the back of your eyelids until the dam breaks and the tears flow.
Midnight Sun has all of these characteristics. It is the story of a girl with XP, a disease which will cause almost surely fatal results if she is exposed to the sun. She can never go outside, but one day the boy of her dreams, which she has stalked from her window, randomly bumps into her on a train platform. The two of them, Katie and Charlie, proceed to have the best summer of their lives. Katie knows that her time is probably limited and she lives every night like it is her last. Charlie is afraid he will fall into the trap of mediocrity so he lives on the edge, and together they have the most fun two teens could ever have.
When I entered the theatre to see Midnight Sun, they handed out tissues to all participates of the viewing. The movie had too many clichés and flaws, however to really see use of these tissues. There were too many plots intertwining in this movie, each would be last for about 15 minutes before being forgotten about, and the script seemed copy and pasted from other high school rom-com-drama-tear-jerk-adventure movies. For instance, Charlie is being looked at by Berkeley for swimming, but recently he had a season ending injury so his scholarship is probably blown. He spends the first half of the movie talking about how his career is over and he is happy about it, but then at a pivotal plot point, Berkeley looks into him again, and after not stepping in the pool for months he is able to achieve his personal record and earn himself a full ride to the California Berkeley swim team. If my description is confusing that’s because I was working mostly with details that are just hinted in the movie.
There is also a romance plot, a dad romance plot, the protagonists’ friends’ romance plot, a music career plot, the protagonists’ dad’s photography plot and more little stories which are awkwardly shoved into the story. All in all, Midnight Sun does nothing to entertain you past its base level, it doesn’t break any new ground, and it is easy to see through the tricks it pulls to try to make you cry. That being said, the actors are top-notch and although you know exactly what you are getting pulled into, they manage to rope you into caring about their lives, however jumbled and ridiculous they may be. The movie deserves a 5 out of 10 for really not putting in any effort, but it is still able to be an ok date, or a good movie to make fun of all the clichés in it.