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True Things film review

★★★★

Directed by: #HarryWootliff

Written by: #MollyDavies and Harry Wootliff

Film Review by: Bruna Foletto Lucas

 

True Things Film Review


True Things stars Ruth Wilson and Tom Burke
True Things stars Ruth Wilson and Tom Burke

Based on the book True Things About Me written by Deborah Kay Davies, the film True Things is a beautiful portrayal of a woman who dives headfirst into a troubled relationship that she can barely understand.


Ruth Wilson plays Kate, a woman who seems lost in life, with a dead-end career and a very limited social life. At her job, she encounters Blond, played by Tom Burke, an intriguing man who has just left prison and who ignites something within her. Blond asks Kate out and they develop a love/hate relationship, love coming from Kate and hate coming mostly from Blond. As the days go by, Kate becomes enthralled and somewhat consumed by her affair and lets herself get overwhelmed, prioritising Blond over her friend and career.


During a Q&A director, Harry Wootliff said that she had purposefully left out some parts of the book for being too dark, which also would have ended up compromising the characters. She stated that by having those in she would not have been able to maintain the ambiguity and withhold guilt, thus she is able to explore Kate’s journey with empathy and without judgment, even when Kate’s actions seem questionable. She takes the passenger seat and lets Kate drive the story forward, wherever she might find herself in. This feat could only have been done given the fact that Wootliff allowed Wilson to bring Kate to life and trusted her to portray the character with compassionate subtlety. What’s more, Wootliff extends this freedom to Burke, giving him space to explore Blond’s nuances and turn him into a three-dimensional character, instead of making him guilty for derailing Kate’s life.


One thing that stands out from the film is the nuance, not only seen in the characters and their relationship but in the cinematography as well. Ashley Connor, the director


of photography, focuses the gaze on small details, she allows the actions to happen and uses the camera to follow them, rather than expecting the actions to unfold for her lenses, almost as an intrusive third party in this relationship. By the same token, she understands when to hold back and leave scenes to the imagination – while doing so both herself and Wootliff avoid gratuitous scenes of nudity and maintain a female gaze throughout.


True Things feels more like a character study of these two people rather than a fictional film – but nonetheless compelling.




 

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