Directed by Sophie Peters-Wilson
Written by Sophie Peters-Wilson
Starring Timothy J. Cox, Sara Ruth Blake, and Abigail Spitler
Short Film Review by Lorenzo Lombardi
It’s Not You deconstructs divorce in a way that is simple yet heartfelt. That way is through the effect on the offspring - in this case, the daughter of a couple. What follows is a relatable journey that starts with harmony and joy but ends with disconnected acceptance.
The short film begins with the aforementioned couple trying to explain to their daughter that they are breaking up. Structure then shifts to the past - a period of which the girl was ecstatic to see her parents’ thriving love. This part of the narrative also shows the cause of the couple’s downfall.
A film of this topic is only as good as its characters. In It’s Not You, the performances shine with believable moments of both devotional love and relational distress. Sara Ruth Blake and Timothy J. Cox respectively give these characters the type of emotional depth that really captivates the audience into caring for them but also especially the daughter. By focusing the perspective on a daughter whose feelings of her parents’ love are haplessly under attack, the audience connect with the story and circumstances. Abagail Spitler plays the daughter with a sense of innocence and unknowing that - when the divorce is happening - it is all the more impactful.
Coupled with handheld cinematography, the short gives off an almost documentary feel with its realistic look and powerful performances. The song played throughout the piece - ‘It’s Lonely around People’ By Mountain Range (Teen Daze Remix) - gives an emotional drive that adds to the devastation without going overboard. And as a creative choice, establishing the divorce at the beginning makes the short all the more effectively saddening while we witness more of the happy times. Overall, It’s Not You is a well-balanced but sad slice of life.