HOW I BLEW IT, 12min., Hong Kong, Comedy/Relationships
Directed by Charlene Marrie
How I Blew It is a campy dark comedy about a girl, Willa who is trying to navigate a toxic relationship. As a shy and naively in love girl (well who thinks she's in love), she struggles to realise that she needs to break up with Mati, her toxic, manipulative and sexually inappropriate boyfriend. Mati throws Willa a birthday brunch at his bitchy girl friend's house, where he only invites his friends and none of Willa's. Willa feels like a total outsider, struggling to enjoy the party among the oddly campy, rude and overly sexual guests. As the brunch develops, so does Willa and Mati's relationship.
How I Blew It is a film about realisation, a wake up call for all those who are stuck in a relationship that does not work for them. Many people are blinded by their “love” for their toxic significant other, or feel that they cannot speak up and have the guts to break up, because they think that’s the best they can do. Too many people I know, and also speaking from personal experience, have forced themselves to stay in a toxic relationship whether their unhappiness was conscious or not.
Through the pretty setting and pretty looking characters of the film, I wanted to symbolise the superficial aspect of certain relationships seeming like everything is perfect on the surface but in truth the core is toxic and ugly. I wanted to pronounce this visually in the film, by showing a shift in colours, going from pink to green, because pretty in pink can’t hide the toxic green forever. In terms of the sound design, the integration of animal sounds and the feeling of entering the jungle, accentuates the absurdity of the protagonist’s situation and her will to stay although things are going haywire. Every human in the film is stripped down from their prettiness, revealing their savage nature.
The whole film feels like we’re bordering between reality and fantasy. Everything is heightened, the colours, the production design and the characters’ personalities. I wanted to make a dark comedy playing on campiness, in order to accentuate my aim to make people understand that forcing oneself to stay in a toxic relationship is absurd, and that only we ourselves have that choice to get out of it. No one can decide that for us. In How I Blew It, the protagonist fights with this struggle of push and pull in her relationship, eventually she must come to a decision.