Written and directed by Zoe Morgan Chiswick and coming in at 9-minutes, Mine tells two stories that follow the same path. One man, one woman and a big question of perspective, starring Michelle Fahrenheim and Tom Campion.
Day to day each individual’s perception is altered by an incalculable and ever increasing number of factors but Mine tackles one of the most influencing, gender. At first glance it almost feels as if you’re about to hear two sides of the same story but quickly the similarities are striking and their situations become identical and yet, not quite.
Violence in relationships is portrayed in the media in such a repetitive and rarely varying fashion that it’s hard not to listen to the characters’ stories unfold without them being tainted with a built in prejudice. Assumptions and inferences such as the male side being construed as violent, predatory or aggressive and the female as over expectant, clinging or desperate, run rampant in film and TV but in this instance the story is the same regardless of gender, the only difference is created by the audience’s individual perspective. Relying on the audience’s viewpoint to add another layer to the film is a great concept and used well here, it starts a conversation on self and societal reflection.
Despite its simple setting, there is immediately a sinister air lingering over the film for reasons for that slowly become clear; exploring insecurity, vulnerability and the intense pressure of dating in a modern world, then diving into darker territory. Series like Netflix’s You have put toxic romance back onscreen in a major way, questioning where the line is between caring and smothering, protective and violent, plus of course altogether psychopathic. The hope is that the majority of humanity know that line, that we all collectively agree when you need to put the phone down or walk away but again it’s a question of perception which is where the film thrives, to discuss at what point things went too far? Whether their actions are exactly the same or if there’s more to consider?
Fahrenheim (who also co-produced the film) and Campion give emotional yet subdued performances, which perfectly suit the film’s one set up, straight to camera, black and white style. Turbulent romance and one-night stands gone awry are well travelled territory but the choice to keep the production scaled back is effective, resisting any unnecessary flashbacks or exaggerated emotion was very much in its favour. The story makes you think, leaves the conversation open and will stick with you after the credits roll.
Verdict: 8/10 | ✯✯✯✯