“Stop waiting for life to be easy” says Dr. William Beckham to Ellen when she is ready to throw the towel, and say “fuck it I give up”. These might sound like harsh words, but words that ring true to everyone.
Like the words of Dr. Beckham, To the Bone is a far too real story a young woman dealing with anorexia. I can imagine that someone that has had anorexia, or knows someone with a similar condition might have a hard a time watching Netflix’s latest original.
A bleak tale about anorexia
For the most part To the Bone is a bleak affair, and rightly so. Anorexia should not be treated lightly (no pun intended), and the movie makes an effort to deal with the subject at hand seriously. Ellen, portrayed by Lily Collins does not eat, constantly measures the diameter of her arm, and obsessively does sit ups during the night.
It’s heartbreaking to watch someone so young, going through this condition and how it affects the people around her. Fortunately, I have never been through that, but To the Bone hit me hard, and that is a compliment to how the story is presented.
Ellen is constantly on the defense, guarded and defensive, and also with no idea how the people around her are affected. “If you die I will kill you” says her step sister in one scene, a moment that brings a smile to your face, but also shows how afraid she is of losing someone she loves. To the Bone is full of these little moments, that keep pushing the story forward.
Performances are amazing, and fit each character perfectly. Keanu Reeves as Dr. Beckham delivers a grounded performance, that fits him perfectly. He was one of most interesting characters. A rather unconventional doctor, not afraid to curse in front of family and patients to prove a point.
Lily Collins of course, significantly thinner for this role, delivers a strong performance and is the shining star of To the Bone. Her character had to deal with a wide range of emotions, and Collins delivers from start to finish.
Netflix’s latest is for the most part a bleak and dark tale about anorexia, but not without its lighthearted moments. At times, it manages to steal some smiles from you, but those are moments are rare.
To the bone a movie that needs to be seen. A movie that has an important message, and those are the best kind of movies.
P.S: It was lovely to see Kathryn Prescott in this, an alumnus of the beloved series SKINS.
P.S.S: Keanu Reeves must be a vampire, because the man is 53 and does not look like it.
To the Bone takes Anorexia seriously. It does not romanticize it, instead it delivers a heart hitting story. It delivers an important message to those unaware of its effects. A must watch.