6.5/10
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94 user 135 critic

How I Live Now (2013)

Trailer
2:13 | Trailer
An American girl, sent to the English countryside to stay with relatives, finds love and purpose while fighting for her survival as war envelops the world around her.

Director:

Kevin Macdonald

Writers:

Meg Rosoff (based on the novel by), Jeremy Brock (screenplay by) | 3 more credits »
1 win & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Saoirse Ronan ... Daisy
Tom Holland ... Isaac
George MacKay ... Eddie
Harley Bird Harley Bird ... Piper
Danny McEvoy Danny McEvoy ... Joe
Anna Chancellor ... Aunt Penn
Jonathan Rugman Jonathan Rugman ... News Reporter
Corey Johnson ... Consular Official
Darren Morfitt Darren Morfitt ... Sergeant
Stella Gonet ... Mrs. McEvoy
Des McAleer Des McAleer ... Major McEvoy
Sophie Stanton ... Woman in Truck
Natasha Jonas ... Woman in Truck
Nav Sidhu Nav Sidhu ... Checkpoint Soldier
Amy Dawson Amy Dawson ... Beaten Woman
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Storyline

American teenager Daisy (Saoirse Ronan) is sent by her estranged father away from New York City to the countryside of England to stay with her Aunt Penn (Anna Chancellor). Her distant cousin Isaac (Tom Holland) welcomes her at the airport and drives her home. She is introduced to her cousins, seventeen-year-old Eddie (George MacKay) and young Piper (Harley Bird) and to their friend Joe (Danny McEvoy). However, Daisy is a resentful, needy of love, and aloof girl who believes that she is cursed and that bad things happen wherever she goes since her mother died giving birth to her. Aunt Penn is a busy woman who is studying the war scenario in England, which is on alert due to an imminent terrorist attack, and needs to fly to Geneva. However, the next morning, a nuclear bomb explodes in London and the authorities of the United Kingdom declare a state of siege. Meanwhile, Daisy and Eddie fall in love with each other, but they are separated by the military, which sends girls to one camp and... Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Love will lead you home.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence, disturbing images, language and some sexuality. | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Kristen Stewart was considered for the role of Daisy in pre-production, but was too busy filming the Twilight Saga. See more »

Goofs

At 28:37, Isaac leaps over the couch (holding a flashlight) and lands comfortably seated, a quick-action scene completed with two different camera angles. In the first, Eddie is watching Isaac's antics, while in the second, Eddie is instead looking down at his radio. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Daisy: Imagine yourself being successful.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Projector: How I Live Now (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Tam Lin
Traditional, arranged by Dave Swarbrick
Performed by Fairport Convention
See more »

User Reviews

It's not Hanna; it's not 28 Days Later; it's a teen romance.
17 November 2013 | by jdesandoSee all my reviews

"In no order of things is adolescence the time of the simple life." Janet Erskine Stuart

Daisy (Saoirse Ronan) is sweet 16 but not so sweet. Filled with teen angst and disgust for kids and adults alike in How I Live Now, she visits the English countryside for a summer with her relatives. Soon she falls in love and the world falls apart.

A terrorist-nuked London and subsequent military state make the second half of this film move at twice the speed of the first half. The second-half has the deadly-virus feel of Danny Boyle's 28 Days Later—but not enough—and echoes of Ronan's teen survivor in Hanna—but not enough.

At what point Daisy becomes a survivalist par excellence is never clear; it just happens. Her accurately handling a gun is a miracle for a NYC teen who probably never touched one before. Her change from isolated, grumpy teen to loving, engaged heroine is too swift to be believed. The first half is consumed by her love affair (16 years old—yikes!) with resident hunk, Eddie (George Mackay).

Let me tell you, teen passion has little to commend it, and even spunky Ronan has difficulty making me care about it. Yet this love is the frame of the film as she leads her younger cousin Piper (Harley Bird) back home from the compound for sequestered rural residents in her hope to reunite with Eddie.

This romance gives me pause about the Hunger Games, whose young love now seems mature by contrast.

If How I Live Now is a metaphoric treatise on Eve's journey out of paradise or teens' need to engage their natural instincts and chuck the superficiality of urban life, then the film has succeeded. Those lofty themes are not helped by the disjointed narrative and silly romance.

Surviving a nuclear attack is subject enough.


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Details

Country:

UK | Canada

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 October 2013 (UK) See more »

Also Known As:

How I Live Now See more »

Filming Locations:

Wales, UK See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$28,547, 10 November 2013

Gross USA:

$60,213

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$925,762
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See full technical specs »

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