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Review: For Her (2017)

Jonathan and Elizabeth are deeply in love. But their relationship is tested when Elizabeth becomes afflicted by a devastating illness. Follow Jonathan’s emotional journey as he struggles to deal with inevitable tragedy, and discover what lengths he’s willing to go to, For Her.

Like a lot of short films these days Daniel Mark Young’s For Her aims to leave such an impact on its audience that perhaps a full length movie may be crowdfunded down the road. There is nothing wrong with this and such methods have resulted in many young filmmakers being able to stretch their wings and establish themselves without having to compromise their vision; but what of the vision…

Detailing the relationship of a couple who are very much in love and will do anything for each other (in this case Jonathan played by Derek Nelson and Elizabeth played by Kattreya Scheurer-Smith) is nothing new in cinema but Young’s exposure of the intricacies involved in their relationship against the impact of Elizabeth’s chronic illness presents the audience with a loving relationship that has escalated on many fronts and levels.

The script, written by James Craigie, lends itself to the kitchen sink drama style that audiences are accustomed to, but it does so to lure them in before revealing that there may be something unpleasant hiding down the drain of the normal looking kitchen sink. Young can emphasise this atmosphere balancing romance and horror idioms whilst keeping a kitchen sink vibe present.

Yes, it is easy to pull apart the film for budget and quality of acting but as with most low budget films we at Cult Faction try to judge a film against the standard it sets itself and anyway both Nelson and Scheurer-Smith present the audience with a definite dynamic that carries the film with Scheurer-Smith especially channelling a little bit of Lady Macbeth as the film progresses.

One criticism I would have is that sometimes there is too much in a scene where meaning could be established in a simpler more impactful way but on the other side of that argument I can see that there is more to this story that could be developed in a full-length feature and sometimes it is hard to workout which parts to change/leave out in a shorter version. This though shows that this story has more potential to be developed into a full-length feature. I think that then will enable both Craigie and Young to sign post out this tale and lead the audience somewhere they may not have been before.

Verdict: 6/10 – The film suffers from all its ideas being crammed into its short running time. That does not mean it is bad by any means. You should check it out and you too will see what potential a full length version will have.

 

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Founded Cult Faction in 2014; previously crawled out of the Black Lodge in 1976, only to find himself in the Village.

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