"tangled web of intimate moments"
by Peter Carrington for remotegoat on 18/11/11

Between the Silence (first performed as a play at the Soho Theatre in 2009) is an suffocating and tangled web of intimate moments framed with ambitious direction and a haunting soundtrack.

The film follows a group of characters who are either desperate to feel something meaningful apart from a gnawing numbness within them or are seeking not to feel or care. From Bea, who looks after her dying Mother, to Scruffy, a petty drug dealer yearning to be a better man, to Alex who wishes to banish his feelings into a sex and drug-filled oblivion. Each are imprisoned by their circumstances and feelings. Genevieve Berkeley-Steele conveys the tortured Bea with haunting forthrightness, but still echoing the frailty of her mother (played by the fragile Imogen Smith). Luke Moss as Alex embodies raging sexuality and balances it with immature emotion. Moss is contrasted with the superbly understated performance of Cameron Brown as Mark, Alex's lover and brother to Bea.

Made with hardly any money the film succeeds in bringing the audience into the contemplative space of the play. Much of this can be accredited to the intimate shooting of Sam Fordham as Director of Photography, whose camerawork allows the audience to sense the intimacy of the tale in each scene. This is offset by the music composition of Phil Quinton who plays heartstrings as if they belonged on a violin. The original songs contributed to the soundtrack all work perfectly with the emotions and messages of the film. It is this direction and music that makes this film more than the sum of its parts.

There are parts to Between the silence that still seem raw however. The direction of camera shots, while hugely impressive and ambitious is sometimes inconsistent; as if undecided as to which 'lens' it is being shot through. At times the camera seems voyeuristic, peeking through tiny spaces, at other times it floats as a Terrence Malik-esque spirit and on occasion holds wide shots for vast lengths of dialogue as if the characters are on a stage. Ultimately no amount of expertly angled shots can disguise the fact that the dialogue (from Moss's writing style) is obviously from a play. Then some narrative conventions of filmmaking cause some dissonance; for example the audience spends so much time with Alex and inside his head for much of the film it is assumed that he is Bea's brother rather than Mark. But these tiny faults are expected when hearing the tip of the tongue of the new an exciting voice of a writer and surrounding production.

As Luke Moss said in his introduction, all who worked on the project did it with love and that shows in every aspect. The questions it asks about responsibility and guilt are poignant and well said. This film showcases the tremendous potential of all who worked on it which engages the audiences during and leaves them contemplative when the credits roll.

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