Directed by: Alex Machlouzarides -Shalit
Written by: Alex Machlouzarides-Shalit
Starring: Gordon Peaston, Charlotte Whitaker
Writer and director Alex Machlouzarides-Shalit creates The Morning After, a story that begins with normality only for a shocking revelation to change everything.
A man (Gordon Peaston) and a woman (Charlotte Whitaker) wake up in the woman's apartment after having met the night before and slept together. It is Saturday morning and the man asks her what her best Friday night has ever been. She tells him about how when she was a child, she would often spend Friday nights with her father, as he was often working away. She describes the activities they would do together and the man realises that they are the same as what he did with his father. As the coincidences keep piling up, it occurs to them that something is not right. The man then spots an old picture of her father and he shows her a picture of his own father from his wallet. It is the same person. Shocked and confused by the revelation, neither knows what to say or do and the man leaves, while the woman begins to cry.
The film won the Best Screenplay award at the We Make Films Festival 2020 and it was an honor well-deserved. The script is methodically structured. The film is six minutes long and from start to finish the narrative takes place in real-time with no cutting through time at all and during those six minutes a lot takes place. The story begins innocently, showing two happy and carefree people. However after the twist that reveals that they are actually half-siblings, the mood dramatically changes with them becoming completely different persons, creating great character development. The dialogue that eventually uncovers the revelation is very well written and makes the viewer want to find out more.
Both Peaston and Whitaker deliver remarkable performances. They are very convincing in portraying individuals who at the beginning of the story appear as normal and friendly and who are then deeply affected by the revelation that they share the same father. They express emotions of shock, confusion and sadness very effectively with their face expressions and body language.
Praise should also go to the direction. Shalit has gone to great lengths in order to create well-structured shots and thanks to the addition of well-timed editing, he successfully captures the characters' reactions throughout the film.
The Morning After is a very good example of clever storytelling and with great acting from the two protagonists, it is a piece of work worhty of a lot of recognition.