Film Review: Midnight Sun

Scott Speer’s Midnight Sun is certainly cheesy, but is a good fix for those looking for a teen weepie.

Teenager Katie suffers from Xeroderma pigmentosum (XP), a rare condition which means she cannot be exposed to sunlight. Relying on the company of her father and her best friend, Katie is flummoxed when she meets her crush one evening. Reluctant to let him know about her condition, Katie cautiously begins to date Charlie…

Directed by Scott Speer and written by Eric Kirsten, Midnight Sun is a remake of a 2006 Japanese film. This version shifts the action to small-town America, where teen Katie must spend daylight behind closed doors.

Midnight Sun seems unambiguous in its aim; the film wants to make its audience cry. It is in the same vein as The Fault in Our Stars and other teen melodramas which centre on a severe medical condition. The film combines a romance with this looming condition. Some humour is attempted, although the success of this is patchy. The narrative is predictable; there will be few surprises here for those familiar with teen melodramas.

Some of the dialogue feels hackneyed, particularly in the film’s more emotional scenes. Furthermore, there are a few plot holes in the second half of the movie. Despite this, Midnight Sun is not beyond redemption. Perhaps through persistence more than anything else, Speer’s movie has a certain charm to it. The protagonist is likeable, and viewers may find themselves rooting for her burgeoning relationship with Charlie.

Bella Thorne delivers much needed charisma as Katie. She is most amiable in this role, and receives good support from Rob Riggle as her father. Patrick Schwarzenegger may look the part of the attractive love interest, but sadly he lacks the acting chops. The music (including songs performed by Bella Thorne) is very much in keeping with the film’s tone, although does lead to a cringeworthy sequence on Katie and Charlie’s big date.

Midnight Sun requires viewers to leave their cynicism behind if they are to enjoy the movie. Often cheesy and sometimes silly, the film entertains in a TV-movie style.

Stuff To Look At

Plenty of film-related goodies for your audio-visual pleasure this week, including Inside OutTomorrowland – A World Beyond, and John Wick

Inside Out

This latest trailer for Disney Pixar’s latest animated feature Inside Out reveals a little more about the plot. The film seems to continue Pixar’s brand of humour on different levels and emotion. Inside Out is due for release in the UK on 24th July 2015.

Tomorrowland – A World Beyond

I remember having these wonderful chicken strips at Tomorrowland in Florida’s Disney World many years ago. I don’t think this new film is about them, however. Tomorrowland – A World Beyond seems to be giving meat to the theme park ride as film concept with Brad Bird directing, from a screenplay by Bird and Damon Lindelof. Tomorrowland – A World Beyond hits UK screens on 22nd May 2015.

Paper Towns

Paper Towns

Paper Towns is the latest film adaptation of a John Green novel. The Fault in Our Stars writer Green second film adaptation is a coming of age story starring Cara Delvingne and Nat Wolff. Paper Towns is set for release in cinemas this summer.

John Wick

Not the puppy! Action thriller John Wick looks like it is going to be a lot of fun. The film stars Keanu Reeves as a retired hit man on a revenge mission. Also starring Alfie Allen, Willem Dafoe, and John Leguizamo, John Wick hits UK cinemas on 10th April 2015.

San Andreas

Disaster movie San Andreas sees the threat in the form of a massive earthquake, and the protagonist in the form of Dwayne Johnson, eager to rescue his daughter in San Francisco amidst the chaos. San Andreas will be released in UK cinemas on 29th May 2015.

Stuff To Look At

Plenty of cinematic treats for Good Friday, including Gone Girl, Jersey Boys, and X-Men: Days of Future Past

Jersey Boys

The most surprising thing about the upcoming screen adaptation of Jersey Boys is that Clint Eastwood directs it. Not an entirely new genre for Eastwood, nevertheless it is an interesting choice. Jersey Boys is set for release on 20th June 2014.

X-Men: Days of Future Past

The third X-Men: Days of Future Past reveals a bit more about the plot of the film. What it does not explain is young Charles Xavier’s hair. Maybe Wolverine reveals what is in his future, follicle-wise, so Xavier decides to grow luscious locks while he can. X-Men: Days of Future Past hits UK screens on 22nd May 2014.

The Fault in Our Stars

Here is the trailer for the upcoming adaptation of John Green’s best-selling novel The Fault in Our Stars. Starring Shailene Woodley as a teenage cancer patient who is forced to attend a support group by her parents, The Fault in Our Stars is out in UK cinemas on 20th June 2014.

Gone Girl

In case you missed it: the trailer for the hotly anticipated Gone Girl was released this week. David Fincher’s team sure do know how to cut a trailer. Starring Ben Affleck and Rosamund Pike, the cinematic adaptation of the best-selling novel Gone Girl is set for release on 3rd October 2014.

The Equaliser

The Equalizer

Denzel Washington stars as a former black ops commander who fakes his own death in The Equaliser. I am guessing that this film will be more action thriller than The Rise and Fall of Reginald Perrin. The Equaliser is due to hit UK screens on 10th October 2014.


The first trailer for musical remake Annie was released earlier this week. I only saw the original for the first time recently, and my lasting impression was that Miss Hannigan was everything. So Cameron Diaz has big shoes to fill. Annie will be released on 6th February 2015.


Arnold Schwarzenegger leads strong cast in action thriller Sabotage. With Arnie getting back into the swing of things, it is funny to think that the action star was Governor of California not too long ago. Sabotage bursts on to UK screens on 7th May 2014.