When “You’re Not You” begins, we are introduced to seemingly perfect Kate on her thirty-fifth birthday. She is an excellent pianist and housewife. She has a husband who adores her. She cooks the most elegant meals for her elegant friends in her elegant home. Then, we move a year and a half ahead and discover that Kate has ALS, and she can hardly move her hands or legs anymore. That’s when we meet Rebecca (Bec), the outspoken and unqualified college student interviewing to be Kate’s new caregiver. Bec is struggling with school, her music, and romance, but Kate sees a charm in her that seems to allude the rest of the world. The movie follows this unlikely pair as they learn to see the best in each other even when the worst is showing.
This film is primarily character-driven. Not much happens in the way of plot, and most of what does happen is entirely unsurprising. From the moment I realized what the story line was, I knew exactly how it would end, and most of the major things that would take place before that. The characters give this movie its quirk and its emotion. Watching Kate and Bec grow closer was a delight, but also majorly bittersweet. While Kate inspired Bec to straighten up, Bec helped Kate loosen up. Also, these two ladies have some funny dialogue throughout the movie that I adored. It is so refreshing to see a genuine female friendship commandeer this story when it is usually romance that dominates realistic dramas like these. I connected to these characters a lot. I loved witnessing Kate stand up for herself and Bec’s most vulnerable moments.
Of course, I cannot forget about the ALS aspect. I found it fascinating! Personally, I have not watched many films that feature ALS, and it seems to me that the movie crew made sure to portray ALS realistically. There was even an ALS consultant listed in the credits. The film also shot down several stereotypes and ableist moments, which is important.
At its core “You’re Not You” is about friendship and strength. Yes, it was sad, but didn’t devastate me the way I secretly wanted it to. It was interesting, but it was not riveting. I enjoyed the film, but I probably won’t watch it again, though I am happy I watched it in the first place and will probably tell my friends about it.