Last Wednesday we shined the spotlight on relationships in the capital with one of London’s finest new feature films and brilliant short; Daphne and Annie Waits.
Annie Waits takes a up close look into what most people have felt can be a never ending cycle; meeting the one person that we decide to spend our entire lives with. At the heart of the short is the dark comedy behind a young modern relationship. Focusing on how the initial spark of meeting someone new can slowly turn into the painfully mundane. From marathoning the latest flavour-of-the-month TV show, to spicing things up in the bedroom, protagonist Annie fast becomes visibly tired of the boring archetype.
The narrative is driven through Annie’s inner monologue, which is paced with precision and perfect delivery. Setting up the visual comedic cues to hit the audience with their intended punch. Beneath the humour is an introspective of the human mind. Despite what overly dramatic soaps and mainstream romantic comedy films might suggest, relationships don’t always end with a cinematic declaration of redemption in the pouring rain. A lot of the time you can be sitting on the settee when something strange suddenly clicks in your head. In the space of just under 10 minutes Annie Waits manages to nail this harsh realism of modern relationships, whilst quickly setting up rules and a rhythm that makes the comedy instantly click. Leading to the films final twist and punch line, that will leave audiences both laughing and pondering on Annie’s future.
Daphne explores realism in the same sense that Annie Waits does, expanding on the same ideas of using the everyday to explore the deepest depths of the respective lead character’s lives. Daphne is the focal point of the whole length of the film, and her story is a deep character study that is passed with patience and care. It explores her actions before and after a violent event she witnesses, showing her to be detached from the people close to her whilst challenging everyone she comes into contact with. It takes her time to come into realisation of what she has witnessed, whilst the film fleshes out every aspect of the relationships around her, ahead of its powerful ending. This ranges from her relationship with her mother, co-workers, the men she hooks up with, and drugs.
The film uses it ultra realism and tragedy to explore hints of comedy, and Emily Beecham’s performance brings touches of hilarity within the moments of sadness. Like Annie Waits, Daphne has an open ending. Leaving the audience to imagine where the character’s will go, and if the sequence of events will have made significant impact on their direction as they drift through the capital alone…