After We Collided (2020)

dir. Roger Kumble

After ends on our star-crossed lovers reuniting. The opening of After We Collided reveals this never actually happened after all, and the star-crossed lovers did not, actually, reunite. After We Collided then goes on to recount how the star-crossed lovers did, in fact, reunite. After We Collided and indeed the whole sorry After franchise is characterised by these meandering loops and U-turns – weak attempts at twists to try and conceal the obvious fact that these films are utterly bereft of real story, real character, or real emotion. Instead, our heroine Tessa’s descent into darkness is shown by the fact that she – gasp – starts wearing more eye make-up than before. Meanwhile, Hardin’s arc is swooped along by his long-suffering mother, who spends her scenes bemoaning how the physical abuse she’s gone through has damaged Hardin, only Hardin, no one but Hardin. Hardin has a competitor for Tessa’s affections this time around, in the form of a colleague who seems to be an all-round decent, honest, and nice man. Of course this means he’s a terrible red herring, and the audience is compelled to back the angry, violent, shallow Hardin at all costs. After We Collided merrily continues After‘s compulsion to take an abusive relationship and put it on a rose-tinted pedestal. Most unfortunately, this is not the end of things, as there are still two more After movies in the pipeline.

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