Set in the present day in Sydney, Australia, Jason (Jordan Dulieu) is a teenager suffering and trying to discover his purpose in life. The film opens with Jason attempting to end his life but being saved last minute by a stranger. Soon, Jason finds himself at a hospital with a Psychiatrist while his parents are being contacted and advised of the situation. We learn that Jason feels like an empty vessel and numb. Any medication that Jason has taken hasn’t helped, nor have the many therapy sessions in the past impacted Jason’s feelings or thoughts.
While his mum is talking with a Psychiatrist at the hospital, Jason sits in the waiting room. He is approached by a young woman named Elizabeth (Freyja Benjamin), who is also in the waiting room for personal health reasons. Elizabeth is quite talkative and has an open personality. She tries to strike up various conversations with him, such as making comments about the quality of the shopping channel on the hospital TV. After introducing herself, she randomly tries to encourage him, although Jason seems shy and somewhat disinterested. With Jason’s mother refusing further support from the hospital, Jason is approved to return home. He thinks this is the last time he will bump into her… at least, so he thought.
While revisiting the hospital to collect some pills, Jason spots Elizabeth outside talking to a random stranger. The two strike up a new friendship and, perhaps, a contemporary romance. Jason now has something or someone to live for, along with a reason to get out of bed in the morning. However, Elizabeth receives further results from the hospital, which isn’t good news. Elizabeth discovers she has a rare disease and reveals this news to Jason. Now the future for both Jason and Elizabeth is uncertain and questionable.
Everything in Between is best described as a drama. Sadly, the film’s premise and concept aren’t too new- a touching story about two young lovers with many dramatic and sad moments, and one horrible disease. However, what makes Everything in Between are some of its themes, such as suicide, adultery, and alcoholism. We don’t see these from Jason’s perspective but also from those around him, such as his father (Martin Crewes), who enjoys cheating on his wife with various women and putting his work life first. Another pleasing aspect is some of the performances on-screen, especially actor Jordan Dulieu, who plays Jason. While his character is generally shy and quiet, he becomes more expressive as the film progresses. This change in expression is a stunning transformation to see from the actor.
At its core, the story offers a positive message for its audience, who, perhaps like Jason, might be currently struggling to find their purpose in life. But the biggest letdown with this film is its ending and closure, which feels incomplete, and I was left wanting just a bit more from its story. Various subplots are introduced among the side characters connected to Jason, and sadly, most of them feel like they are never resolved. The final moments feel rushed, abrupt and, again, incomplete, as if more details should have been given to viewers before the credits rolled. While viewers will feel content for most of the plot, it’s a shame that the ending leaves audiences feeling a combination of sadness and frustration. The character of Elizabeth also has questionable moments, such as her spiritual beliefs and life thoughts, all of which Jason accepts, follows, and repeats.
Overall, if you’re seeking a love story filled with dramatic and teary moments, Everything in Between is worth your time. Thankfully, this isn’t just another sloppy teenage love story. While the premise is familiar, there are a few pleasing aspects, including the performance of the lead and the various topics and messages the film tackles, such as suicide and adultery. At its core, there is a positive message which I admired. However, the film’s biggest letdown is the ending, in which many subplots lack closure, and the main story feels rushed and incomplete. Still, there’s plenty of drama and emotion on screen here, but for some, there could also be a touch of frustration given the lack of conclusion in certain areas. Everything in Between (2022) is Available in Australian Cinemas from October 20th.