Directed by: Ross Partridge
Starring: Ross Partridge (Lamb), Oona Laurence (Tommie), Jess Weixler (Linny), Tom Bower (Foster)
Country: United States
Language: English (Eng Subs)
Genres: Old-Young Relationships
Plot – Spoilers:
Lamb isn’t able to hold down his job and the death of his father leaves him uncertain about what’s next. He feels unworthy of the affections of a younger work colleague and is getting ready to drift through his days, when he meets eleven year-old Tommie at a mall’s parking lot. He alternates between giving her life-tips and exhibiting bizarre behaviour like pretending to abduct her. And yet, his general demeanor is nice enough and Tommie’s life drab enough for her to start enjoying his company. So when he invites her on a long trip to his remote country home, she readily agrees, even though he gives her a new name Emily, and instructions to pretend to be father and daughter in case they’re stopped.
Thoughts – Massive Spoilers:
For the longest time, you’re left confused about Lamb and even Tommie. What do either want out of this. But with Lamb as the grownup, your attention is more on him as the narrative continually confuses you into handing him the benefit of doubt.
The whole house-in-the-middle-of-nowhere seems like Lamb trying to isolate himself and Tommie from the judging eyes of the world – if no one were around, it would be idyllic because he then wouldn’t be forced to confront his guilt.
Lamb himself is most likely a victim of abuse, going by the story he tells of his brother sleeping outside of their home. Unless, this was just a made-up story like the others he came up with.
Could think of three possibilities of Lamb’s intentions:
1. He’s in a bad space and recognizes a similar soul in Tommie, and thinks she’s at an age where there’s still hope to steer her out of her inevitably empty future. A sort of Holden Caulfield trying to help her in an unconventional way.
2. The above assumes no physical intimacy between the two. Then there’s the thought that Lamb was taking it as it went – trying to see if he could groom Tommie into a consensual relationship. Like when he asked her to mess up the hotel room so it would feel like she was inviting him into her room.
He probably jogged down this path until the incident where he spilled a drink on her and she hysterically yelled at him to Go away. Her hysteria was probably itself a reaction to sensing for the first time, something sinister in him. In any case, this probably shook him out of the convenient reverie he had allowed himself to slip into, and turned on the slow drip of guilt.
3. Despite all the talk and outward facade, Lamb actually got physical with Tommie – the bits where she says her stomach hurts and even throws up, could be more than simple reactions to their lifestyle and the arrival of Linny.