›› The Wilding
a short film by Grant Scicluna.
2012 | 15 mins | Australia.
principal players: Reef Ireland / Malcolm, Luke Mullins / Adam, Frank Sweet / Gav, Shannon Glowacki / Tye, Richard Anastasios / Simmo and Lachlan Ward as Bosey.
Official Synopsis: "Juvenile inmate Malcolm is in love with his cellmate Tye, but their relationship is confined within their cell. When Malcolm is offered a shot at parole, he finds himself torn between a chance for freedom, or protecting the one he loves."
Showcasing gay love within the walls of a harsh detention facility, here writer and director Grant Scicluna storms home with a work that is as tough, as it is a testament to affairs of the heart, as we come to witness a young man forced to decide between protecting his true love, or looking after number one and the possibility of early release.
Shot hand-held camera style, the result is an achingly realistic raw-edged work, with Reef Ireland every inch the hardened teen of the piece, only to show his soft side when alone with his lover Tye, well aware that in a hard-hitting prison environment their love must itself remain imprisoned behind bars. For it is here that Scicluna cuts to the heart of his story, playing Tye as Malcolm's Achilles' heel and a sweet look of love that unwittingly gives the game away, to one and all.
Juxtaposing scenes of outright violence with moments of same-sex tenderness, this is a work that and in spite of acts of sexual brutality, shies away from explicit nudity, opting instead for an uncompromising narrative. Namely the story of a young man faced with having to sacrifice everything - in the name of love. And in terms of borstal life, that literally means fighting for your man, in a short film that's frankly played with all the might of a feature. Simply Scicluna's best work to date.
Gay Visibility - overt.
Nudity - bare-arsed cheek.
Overall - file under ... 4 stars.