‘Love, J.x’ scripted, cast and directed by me for University assessment.

It was the first time that something I had personally scripted and storyboarded had been produced (I hired Yolanda Y. Liou to film), so I found that pretty exciting. It was also my first time using audio recording equipment ( I used the Zoon H4nSP), which I found pretty interesting to use, but obviously I was nervous to take on the temporary role as sound technician, as I wanted to make sure that the film was really great, especially in regards to quality. Dubbing the sound over the edited film was one of the most difficult/ fiddly parts of the production process, so of course I ensured I left time to do that. Overall I am pretty pleased with the outcome.

Link to film

Synopsis

Laura and Jake are housemates, they are both about to embark on new chapters in their lives. Jake is planning to ask his grumpy girlfriend Sophie to marry him, whilst Laura is excited for her ‘big’ interview for a PR company.

The film begins with Jake in the bathroom alone. He is practicing asking Sophie to marry him. His practice is interrupted by Laura who is just about to leave for her interview, they wish each other luck. Afterwards, Jake hides an engagement ring in the bathroom cupboard.

In the next scene, we go back to when Laura is getting ready for her interview, she too is practicing lines and perfecting her look.  She calls Joe for moral support, and to thank him for the note that she thinks he put on the bathroom mirror, but her call is rejected. She is confused but seemingly gets over it quickly, leaving the bathroom in a hurry.

We return to Laura’s story later in the day, she’s just come out of her interview and is excited. She calls her mum to let her know how it went. However, her call is cut short by Joe who has arrived at her house. Joe and Laura enter the bathroom and end up having sex.

Later that night, Jake and Sophie are in the bathroom together getting ready for a night out. Jake is talking enthusiastically about the future, however Sophie ignores him and seems more interested in texting other people. Sophie leaves the bathroom in a strop, she tells Jake that she’ll wait for him in the car. Jake waits until she has left the house, and then locks the door and take the ring and puts it in his pocket, and after Sophie calls him impatiently demanding him to join her, he leaves the bathroom.

Over a month later, we come back to Laura who is pacing across the bathroom floor on the phone to her sister Carrie. She is holding a pregnancy test. She is nervous about the outcome. Her worst nightmare appears to come true, as she learns that she is pregnant. Unsure of what to do, Laura makes her excuses and end the calls with her sister.

We are brought back to Jake’s story, and Sophie is hurriedly packing an overnight bag with her belongings, Jake is trying to talk to her but she seems to be in a rush to leave. Jake demands that she tells him what she is doing, at which point she reveals that she has fallen out of love with him and has met someone else. Devastated Jake produces the ring from his pocket and tells Sophie how he’d planned to propose to her. After an awkward moment between the two, Sophie leaves. In his anger and sadness, Jake punches the bathroom wall, and chucks the ring onto the floor.

The next evening, during a house party that Jake has thrown to celebrate Laura’s successful interview, Laura decides to tell Joe her news. Laura drags a very drunk Joe into the bathroom and tell him that she is pregnant. Joe reacts badly and accuses her of being selfish and trying to manipulate him. Laura also finds out that the notes on her mirror weren’t from Joe, as she’d first assumed. Joe leaves the bathroom and party, leaving Laura to deal with the pregnancy alone.

Laura, in great distress and shock at Joe’s reaction, slumps down against the bathroom wall. Her eye catches a bright pink post it note in the big and realises it is attached to the pregnancy test. In a surprise twist, she realises that the ‘J. x’ on the post it was actually from Jake as revealed by her mumbling his name under her breath.  Laura texts Jake, and shortly after his enters the bathroom, looking sad himself;  seeing Laura in her upset state, Jake decides to go to her aid, mopping up her tears tentatively with his jumper sleeve. Jake sits next to her on the bathroom floor. The housemates fade into the background and in the foreground, between the two we see the rejected engagement ring on the floor. The symbol of the ring leaves the film on a cliffhanger, and the audience wondering whether the friendship between Jake and Laura will blossom into something more.

Still from, ‘Love. J x’ Filmed by Yolanda Y. Liou. Scripted & Directed by Cat van Maanen.

Cast and Crew

Laura ~ Joanne Swann

Jake ~ George Amodio

Sophie ~ Andrea Slamkova

Joe ~ Jason Canugasabey

Filming ~ Yolanda Y. Liou

Directing ~ Cat van Maanen

Editing ~ Cat van Maanen

Sound ~ Cat van Maanen

Scripting ~ Cat van Maanen

 

 

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