IF THEY CAN'T BE LOVED, 22min., Singapore
Directed by Hattie Lee
Elaine, an abused housewife looking for redemption and Regina, guilty over the death of her lover, find each other and attempt to heal from their trauma.
Get to know the filmmaker:
1. What motivated you to make this film?
The general motivation came from past experiences, though not firsthand. We've seen many of our friends cling on to toxic relationships believing that they can salvage what is left of their love, which is an unhealthy and painful obsession. We wanted to create an awareness of domestic and emotional abuse, and how it can affect not just an individual, but as a community. Failure to provide for others or even failure to read the warning signs can lead to disastrous consequences. At the end of the day, all of us have a responsibility to each other's survival, and a simple hello could save someone's life.
2. From the idea to the finished product, how long did it take for you to make this film?
To be honest, there was a long delay from conception to production, as we were self funded and took about a year and a half to earn the money to make this film (on top of paying off our personals). Thankfully we managed to shoot just before Covid hit. We would say about two years?
3. How would you describe your film in two words!?
4. What was the biggest obstacle you faced in completing this film?
The entire production itself was just a series of obstacles, especially when it came to emotional value. We were dealing with heavy topics such as suicide and abuse, and we were afraid the cast would find it difficult to make sense of certain themes and values. However, as you would be able to tell, that was proven wrong very quickly, the cast did a wonderful job at being who they were meant to be. We even recall Shaun (as Jeremy, the abusive husband) having to get angry at the director (us!) so he could give his all in the opening shot of the film.
5. What were your initial reactions when watching the audience talking about your film in the feedback video?
It was very intriguing to hear comments from both men and women, and we were very glad to hear that both sides got our message loud and clear. It was a tearful moment hearing that our opening shot was what got our audiences the most, and hopefully we will have more of these moments in the future.
6. When did you realize that you wanted to make films?
We've always wanted to tell stories since we were young, we tried many avenues, such as writing poetry, books, even photo captions. We were surrounded by stories that captured us day to day, so we couldn't really pinpoint an exact moment that we wanted to make films.
7. What film have you seen the most in your life?
We don't really know? We like to watch a film just once, twice if we really didn't get it. We believe the magic of cinema is in its first viewing.
8. What other elements of the festival experience can we and other festivals implement to satisfy you and help you further your filmmaking career?
We aren't too sure, it's our first few times submitting to festivals and awards, so we can't really say what would help us!
9. You submitted to the festival via FilmFreeway. How has your experiences been working on the festival platform site?
It's been very easy to use the platform, especially when it comes to submission. It's easy to understand and through it we've submitted to multiple festivals and awards very easily!
10. What is your favorite meal?
What a question! Google "Singapore White Carrot Cake"!
11. What is next for you? A new film?
We've just wrapped up another series titled "Learn First to Die", about a mother grieving the loss of her only child. We've also just sent it to festivals so here's hoping!