True Issues tells a sadly acquainted story. Woman meets boy. Boy seems to be a mendacious bellend. Woman sticks round. Harry Wootliff’s second function lacks the emotional oomph of her debut, Solely You, however delivers an imaginatively shot, well-played, low-energy character-study of a lady struggling to seek out the issues (profession, companion, youngsters) that appear to return so simply to others. Skewering Instagram-style life-idealisation, Wootliff’s non-judgmental movie posits the other of #relationshipgoals however with out having something actually new to say about up to date gender dynamics.
The union below the microscope is that of Kate (Ruth Wilson) and Blond (Tom Burke). Kate desires of cunnilingus on a seashore, has the home expertise of Travis Bickle and is commonly late for work in a Kent advantages workplace. Blond is 4 months out of jail, doesn’t care about the place his cigarette smoke goes and flings out heavy phrases (“We’re soulmates”) with informal abandon. This couple don’t meet cute — they meet ugly in Kate’s soul-sapping work cubicle, and get collectively after a car-park shag, pub lunches and skinny-dipping in a lake. (Whereas Ethan Hawke and Julie Delpy explored Vienna, Paris and Greece, Wilson and Burke get Ramsgate.) Wootliff and Molly Davies’ screenplay filters Kate and Blond’s relationship by way of a list of recent considerations —gaslighting, micromanipulations, poisonous masculinity — however doesn’t actually provide a slant or tackle the fabric. It has a great deal of compelling element, however its centre feels somewhat bit hole.
Burke is quickly changing into the poster-boy for Bastard Boyfriends.
Away from Blond, Wootliff sketches Kate’s life in broad strokes, from vaguely upset dad and mom (Elizabeth Rider, Frank McCusker) to her pas-agg pal Alison (Hayley Squires does her greatest enjoying what’s much less a personality, extra a cheerleader for societal norms) to Rob (Tom Weston-Jones), a date arrange by Alison, whose straight-arrow character (“We’re not having intercourse in my automotive. It’s a piece automotive”) appears cackhandedly designed to disclose Kate’s unhinged mindset and rationalise her obsession with Blond.
After The Memento and now this, Burke is quickly changing into the poster-boy for Bastard Boyfriends. Geezerish and badly peroxided, Blond runs cold and warm like a dodgy faucet, skilfully flitting between ardour and detachment. Wootliff finds hanging methods to etch Kate’s worldview, having her actually boxed in by a 1:33 facet ratio, highlighting her disorientation with Ashley Connor’s woozy visuals of crap seaside pubs, and utilizing Alex Baranowski’s skittering strings to counsel discomfort in her personal pores and skin. However a few of the writing feels compelled: on-the-nose fake-out dream sequences, the machine of Kate passing off Blond’s dialogue and ideas as her personal.
Wilson nails Kate’s loneliness and misplaced optimism, however she will be able to’t make Kate’s arc convincing. The film ends on a sequence set to PJ Harvey’s blistering ‘Rid Of Me’, which delivers a frisson and righteous anger the remainder of the movie can’t muster.