Mar 1, 2022
Melanie Revill, Charlotte Reidie, Tom Metcalf, Gary Raymond
An elderly woman and her young carer open up to each other, leading to dramatic consequences.
A young female carer has been assigned to look after an ill, single, old woman who lives by herself in her home. The aged woman appears a bit eccentric and initially she is cold and distant towards her helper and questions her about her life. Eventually, the two women learn more about each other and bond. However, it is later revealed that things are not what they appear to be.
This dark psychological drama explores the lives of two troubled individuals and the relationship that develops between them. Basically, the first half or so focuses on the interactions between the carer and the old woman. None of the characters' names are revealed. The elderly woman claims that she does not want to bond with the youngster, yet she wishes to know more about her, to find out who she is. She asks her rather personal questions, much to the carer's disapproval. During the second half, things change rather dramatically, with revelations that make the viewer question events they saw previously.
The strong screenplay contains a great deal of drama and emotional conversations. The struggles that the two women go through are shown rather vividly. The narrative contains situations that deal with trauma, regrets, loneliness, alcoholism, religion, domestic violence, mental health and self-discovery. There is hardly any happiness in this hard-hitting story. The unexpected twists effectively turn things around and bring the audience closer to understanding what is really going on.
The acting is superb. Revill is astonishing as an unhappy loner who spends her time painting, building a dollhouse and solving puzzles. She is haunted by her past, has a drinking problem and tends to be violent when she gets angry. Reidie is equally great as a young person who has troubles of her own, as she is living with her abusive father who does not want his daughter dating. Metcalf and Raymond play their supporting roles very well.
Charlton's directing includes well-executed long takes and the editing makes good use of fast cutting techniques. Oliver Rigby delivers beautiful cinematography and there are creative lighting effects. The score by William Cunningham is powerful and dramatic and adds significant value to the feature.
This film is a distressing story that is rather heavy on emotions. The atmosphere is downbeat and the dramatic revelations, confrontations and powerful performances make this movie an admirable achievement.