This short film opens with an animated woman talking very excitedly on the phone about her pregnancy as she nips to use the loo. We see the blood on her leg before she does. The next scene moves us quickly to the news that the baby will be impacted in some way in their development. The difference in the woman between these two scenes is immense, and it is this performance that drives the film. It is not an easy one to watch, but it is really well done.
Eileen Walsh is totally convincing as a mother crushed by her reality, by having to be a carer more than a mother, by having to see others having that 'relationship' that she feels robbed of. When I say she is 'convincing', I mean that she is so on the money that you will empathize with her, not just sympathize. The mother's struggle and emotional trauma is very real in its portrayal, and although extreme in where it goes, it never breaks that connection. Indeed the only character I question is the old man on the beach, who is weirdly inactive in what he does next. It is an emotionally wrenching film, but really well written and delivered around Walsh's great performance. O'Donnell's direction and writing leaves lots of space, so that the deftest touches give the viewer a lot of information.
It is a bleak film with only a small glimmer in there, but it is responsible, honest, and frank in what it does - and in doing so, it is impossible to judge or hate the lead character.
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