Wattpad is a website where anyone can write and publish their story. Wattpad is dominated by young adult fiction, and the majority of the stories of this genre are called fanfiction. Fanfiction is fictional writing written by fans of art form or public figures, such as singers and actors. Anna Todd, who was inspired by music and fans of One Direction, started a fanfiction series titled After. The series was a massive hit, gaining millions and millions of readers over time. It is currently one of the most popular books on the site. When a book is a hit, it is almost a guarantee that Hollywood will adapt it. The movie adaptation of After, also titled After, was released in 2019.
After tells a story of Tessa Young, who just graduated from high school. She starts her college by moving into her college dorm. She has a boyfriend, Noah, who has been with her for a while. She meets Steph, her new roommate at the dorm. She also meets Tristan, Steph’s girlfriend. The day after, Tessa befriends a friend of Steph, Hardin Scott. Her encounter with the mysterious Scott changes the course of her life forever.
Many teenage and coming-of-age films will try to bring something new to the genre, giving their unique narrative and revitalizing the tropes associated with adolescence. After is not one of these films. It is baffling that Hollywood still produces a cliched-ridden, derivative film like After in our time where many competently made, unique coming-of-age dramas such as Eight Grade and Me, Earl, and The Dying Girl exist. It is a quick cash grab for the fans of the book, without adding something new, forming an identity, or even fix the reprehensible parts of the source material. It is the barely legal version of Fifty Shades of Grey. The film also has embarrassing characters and nonsensical plot. There is nothing sexy, romantic, or even bearable part in this; the trope of stalking your crush to win their heart is not relevant anymore and also damaging for the teenagers. It is time for production companies to stop giving these kinds of stories a medium to gain quick buck from oblivious teenage girls. The performances of the actors are also nothing special and do not redeem the film in any way.
There is nothing redeemable about After. It is empty, has no interesting characters, deploys the same old clichés and tiring plot, and does not have anything new to say. There are far more captivating and sexy romance films than After. It sucks and is absolutely not worthy of your time.