FOR FILMS IN CHARGE OF CHANGE
directed by Julia Hart
After her directorial debut `Emma, Change The Locks` screened at Raindance Film Festival and 6 other international film festivals, Julia Hart develops a screen adaptation of a short story wrote by DJ Connell, best known for focusing on the subject of loneliness. The title tries to convey a certain impression that the story is going to bring up some nostalgic moments - and a good story that is able to pass the emotions to its viewers is definitely one important detail that can make the difference between a memorable short film and a second-rate one.
The opening sequence reveals a natural surround meant to capture the atmosphere of a placid late autumn as seen in the backyard of Merle’s house, a lonely elderly woman that is taking care of her garden plants that had been parched by sun. The sudden greeting of her younger neighbour, Lucy, seems to disturb her at the very beginning, but soon she realises that a short chitchat couldn’t harm her. Moreover, she finds out that they have one thing in common: small hands, therefore they wear kids gloves made in China, ’’because the Chinese have small hands, that’s why’’. The power of the conversation touches the depths of Merle’s feelings, even though the conversation was a brief one, but the concern that interrupted it was the key that released the feeling of nostalgia that will follow her throughout the day.
The whole film is accompanied by melancholic music and some of the scenes are enhanced by it, but this doesn’t necessarily bring a plus for the project. Even though it doesn’t excel in technical nor artistic values, there are many brief shots that success in describing the character as it is, using a non-linear structure when it comes to nostalgic moments or the ones when she begins projecting her hopes and dreams onto her neighbour who is a young mother and happens to have a baby boy, exactly like she had when she was her age. In this way she tries to compensate for something that she is missing.
The main theme is undoubtedly love, because a mother’s love for her dear ones can’t really be illustrated in such a way that everyone can understand it. Despite that, Merle has an unique way for showing love for her son by keeping his photo in a value box, next to beautiful and expensive-looking jewelry and other valuable stuff. The love for her son was constant all her life, even though there were (and are) different obstacles, but sadly at the end of the day all her expectations seem to fall apart one by one.
In the end, ’’Kid Gloves’’ tells a great story with an overarching message about understanding acceptance and the course and shapes that love is taking throughout life. A powerful story told in such a brief form starting from a simple premise that leaves a lot to the imagination is sure to receive the acclaim it deserves.