Five Feet Apart is a 2019 American romantic drama film written by Mikki Daughtry and Tobias Iaconis and directed by Justin Baldoni. The film stars Haley Lu Richardson and Cole Sprouse as two young patients with cystic fibrosis as they try and have a relationship despite always being forced to stay a certain distance away from other people. It will be released in the United States on March 15, 2019, by CBS Films.
A tearjerking romance centered around two teenagers living with cystic fibrosis, first-time feature director Justin Baldoni’s “Five Feet Apart” is ultimately little more than a cover band treatment of “The Fault in Our Stars.” But as far as cover bands go, at least it has a hell of a frontwoman in Haley Lu Richardson. Fresh off of memorable supporting parts in “The Edge of Seventeen” and “Support the Girls,” Richardson gives a star turn every bit as charismatic and assured as the film is formulaic and forgettable, bringing soul, style and nuance to a character that could have easily been a condescending caricature.
An exceptional talent in a sea of well-meaning adequacy, Richardson plays Stella, a bright, wryly optimistic high schooler who has been dealing with cystic fibrosis since childhood. When we meet her, she’s just landed in the hospital for yet another extended stay, and wastes no time decorating every inch of her room, organizing her pills into perfect color-coded rows, and putting together detailed to-do lists for each day. Designing apps from bed and livestreaming her treatment sessions as she waits for a lung transplant, she’s turned her corner of the hospital into something of a second home, maintaining a running dialogue with maternal head nurse Barb (Kimberly Hebert Gregory) and her deferential gay best friend Poe (Moises Arias), a fellow longtime patient.