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Stuck

Critic:

Joe Beck

|

Posted on:

4 Jun 2022

Film Reviews
Stuck
Directed by:
Praheme
Written by:
Andrew Burrows-Trotman, Praheme
Starring:
Javicia Leslie, Hari Williams
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‘Stuck’ shouldn’t work as a film. It’s a concept so bizarre, so outrageously ludicrous that the fact it was even given the opportunity to be filmed is a minor miracle in itself. However, despite its sheer ridiculousness, it is an effectively charming and affectionate comedy.

 

Charming and affectionate would not normally be how a film of this nature would be described - typical words would be: raunchy, mad, and gross. At first, things appear to be all on track for a by-the-book romantic comedy, as two young attractive people - Ebony (Javicia Leslie) and Dre (Hari Williams) catch each other's eye at the club. As is the way, they take things to the bedroom - nothing new yet.

 

It’s only after two, creatively shot, rounds of sex that they realise that there’s a bit of an issue, and ‘Stuck’ begins to deviate from the norm. In the act of intercourse, the pair have become stuck. No, you did not read that incorrectly; they are stuck together in that oh so delicate position. Try as they might, they can’t seem to separate - a big problem for Ebony, who has a big pitch at work the next day.

 


They contemplate calling an ambulance but the shame would surely ruin their respective reputations permanently. It isn’t until the morning that Dre has a new suggestion - they become vulnerable, pushing closer spiritually in order to pull apart. 



 

Ordinarily, this is the kind of idea which is quickly thrown away in favour of something more … streamlined. At most the script would be written up before somebody gathered some common sense and realised that it quite simply wouldn’t work. Obviously, somewhere along the production line some crazy genius caught wind of Andrew Burrows-Trotman’s story, commissioned Praheme to write and direct and gambled that it would turn out good.

 

It was a very wise gamble. Praheme’s script is sharp and neat, with clever one-liners and offhand comments coming thick and fast, whilst also finding space for a surprising amount of affection and realism. As director Praheme also impresses, with the aforementioned inventive sex scenes impressing the most - focusing only on the silhouette and not showing any nudity. The conversation is also given an added edge by the close-up shots of Ebony and Dre’s mouths as the camera quickly pans from one to the other. 



 

Credit must also be given to the film’s two leads - Javicia Leslie and Hari Williams - who manage the hard task of filming semi-naked for almost the entirety of the film. The two have magnetic chemistry and rebound off each other well - making what could have been an awkward watch, feel very light and breezy.

 

The only lingering disappointment with ‘Stuck’ is the conclusion, which dampens any heartwarming feelings which have built up over the course of its slight 17 minutes runtime. The ending feels like an excerpt from another film and doesn’t suit the overriding emotions which have built up to that point - leaving the viewer ultimately dissatisfied with the finished product.

 

Nevertheless, despite a sub-par ending, ‘Stuck’ is a worthwhile watch - far from the impression the synopsis gives. It is the raunchy, mad, and gross film which your mind first jumps to, but it's something else as well, something better - a film with a genuine heart.

About the Film Critic
Joe Beck
Joe Beck
Short Film