If I Stay (DVD) – Movie Review
Follow Genre: Romance, Drama, Music
Director: R.J. Cutler
Distributor: 20th Century Fox, Metro Goldwyn Mayer Pictures Inc.
Duration: 103 min.

If I Stay (DVD) – Movie Review

Site Score
Good: Acting performances, movie makes you think
Bad: The out-of-body scenes are not convincing
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(1 votes)
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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)

What happens when people get into a coma and when they are hovering between life and death? It’s a question that didn’t get a real answer over the years aside from some guesswork and the experience from those who’ve woken up from it. Still, it’s a strange thing, lying there unconscious, the possibility of death seconds away. If I Stay gives us exactly the situation described above. A young woman ends up in a coma after a car crash and the question is simple: Should she stay?

If I stay logo

We’ll start at the beginning of the movie. Mia Hall is a sweet, young girl who’s very fond of music (something she developed with the help of her parents as they are both very into rock music). The only difference between Mia and her parents (and her little brother as well) is that she loves classical music. No hard, pop, jazz or any other kind of rock for her! Give her some Beethoven and she’s the happiest girl in the world. In early childhood, Mia fell in love with the cello and decided to play it with a passion so fierce that it made her one heck of a musician in young adulthood. One day, while she’s practicing her cello alone in a classroom, Adam (a pretty popular guy) notices her and falls in love. Adam is a musician himself and his band is pretty popular already so at first, Mia doesn’t quite understand what Adam sees in her. Eventually, they develop a beautiful relationship but Adam’s success soon starts to bring a heavy toll. One day, Mia, her brother Teddy and her parents find themselves to be the victim of a terrible car crash and Mia ends up in a coma. Now, it’s up to her to decide whether she fights to wake up, or to let it all slide and move on to whatever is beyond.

If I stay1

Mia experiences an out-of-body situation in its purest form and like this, we (the viewers) see her walking around like nothing is going on while knowing perfectly well she’s close to death. The movie jumps back and forth between flashbacks and the present time and doing so, we see a lot more of Mia and Adam as a couple. Like I mentioned before, Adam’s success in the music business causes the two to be separated from one another and the relationship slowly starts to crumble down. Mia is tired of sitting at home, waiting for Adam and decides to take her own shot at becoming an appraised cello player, but this is not to Adam’s liking. It’s interesting to see the ups and downs in the lives of both Mia and Adam and this is what makes the audience wonder, what will Mia choose to do in the end?

Acting wise, there’s a discrepancy between the scenes where Mia is in a coma and her spirit is wandering around and the flashbacks. In the latter, the acting of Chloë Grace Moretz is very good and truly convincing but when the movie switches to the present day, the walking spirit idea doesn’t do Moretz performances a lot of justice. It’s just weird to see her calling out: Mom! Dad! Teddy! every few moments while she constantly runs around in hysteria. You can see what the directors tried to do but it didn’t really work out in the movie which is a shame. Other acting performances are on the same level of Moretz when she’s playing in the flashback scenes. Jamie Blackley (Adam) is a great young actor with a lot of talent and there’s nothing to complain about the even younger fellow Jakob Davies who plays Mia’s sweet brother Teddy. Overall, the cast is more than decent and it’s a joy to see the actors and actresses at work.

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There’re quite a few extras to be found on the disc. First of all, the official cinema trailer has been added. In the Gallery, you’ll find a nice collection of pictures from the set and the movie itself. Nothing overly exciting but worth the couple of minutes it takes to get through them. The obligatory deleted scenes or also present (how could they not?) and if you like to hear more about the making of the movie, I suggest you take a look at both the Audio and Music commentary. Lastly, the video clip of the song ‘Never Coming Down’ is featured as an extra as well. A lot to check out on!


The circumstances around death are always a hard topic and If I Stay tries to give the audience a glimpse on how someone in a coma decides whether to fight or to go on. The movie certainly gives you something to think about but the execution could’ve been better. The out-of-body scenes are just not convincing enough which is an absolute shame as Chloë Grace Moretz acting talent is surely of such quality that it all could’ve turned out a lot better.

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Rating: 10.0/10 (1 vote cast)
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If I Stay (DVD) - Movie Review, 10.0 out of 10 based on 1 rating

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