Movie adaptations of young adult romance novels tend to be twinkling, epic love stories with uplifting conclusions. But the new trailer for Chemical Hearts, starring Riverdale's Lili Reinhart and Euphoria's Austin Abrams, details a complex, messier side to being young and in love that isn't often explored.
Based on Krystal Sutherland's YA novel Our Chemical Hearts, the Richard Tanne-directed Amazon original film tells the story of Henry Page (Abrams), a 17-year-old high school student who feels like nothing remarkable has happened to him. His senior year, however, he meets Grace Town (Reinhart), a new transfer student with a limp and a mysterious past. Grace joins Henry as co-editor-in-chief on the school newspaper, and from there the two embark on a journey of love, loss, and the ever-complicated coming-of-age.
In the trailer, we see Henry meet Grace for the first time at school and slowly fall for her as they work together on the paper and get to know each other outside of school. But as much as Henry tries to understand her better — why she quit writing, why she uses a cane, whether her feelings towards him are as fervent as his — Grace seems to keep most of the details of her personal life secret. "There's a reason why whenever adults talk about young people they can't avoid the truth," Grace says. "...that being young is so painful, it's almost to much to feel."
Reinhart, who is also an executive producer of the movie, told EW that the film will look at young relationships through a more serious, adult lense. "Young love stories that don't have happy endings are also stories that need to be told," Reinhart said. "Chemical Hearts is the kind of movie that portrays young love in a realistic light in the sense that it f—ing hurts sometimes. And oftentimes it does not go the way you want it to. And you can have this idea of someone and they don't measure up to what you want them to be."
Watch the trailer for Chemical Hearts, out on Amazon Prime Video August 21, below.