TREACLE: A short, sharp film with some sickly sweetness as the title suggests. Treacle (dir. Rosie Westhoff) shows us the meaning of too much of a good thing.
The two sole cast members Jesse (Ariana Anderson) and Belle (April Kelley) have great chemistry and strong performances. Jesse is recently single, and has enlisted Belle to be her fill-in for a romantic getaway she’d ill-planned with her soon to be ex (male). The two girls jump in a car and drive up the SoCal coast, and we follow the breakdown of their relationship over 24 hours.
Their best friendship is easily believable, backed up by the continual insults and silly banter. They while away their time drinking and swimming, which eventually leads to Jesse leaning in for a kiss. They hook up, and in the bright morning light their decisions from last night come back to haunt them.
Belle is bisexual – a sticking point throughout for Jesse. She seems almost homophobic in her understanding of sexual orientation, which is probably why Belle feels so betrayed at her cold feet the next morning. A drunken hook up for a straight girl, a deep betrayal for a bisexual one. The car ride back shows them both in separate shots, compared to the warm, wide shots of the drive up at the beginning. The cracks have formed and are large between them.
The film achieves it’s aim – to give a story to the ‘B’ in LGBTQ. The acting is strong, particularly from Kelley who also wrote the script and, if I may, is most likely drawing from her personal well.
A thoroughly modern story of romance, confusion and sexuality. Treacle is sweet, sickly and lets the message lingers in your mouth after the credits roll.
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