Having kids changes everything. Whether it’s the new responsibilities, the tiredness or the hundred and one other things you have to do, the one thing that feels irrevocably altered is your sex life. Gone are the days of wild, spontaneous sex and in their place are carefully-planned, often-interrupted sessions of exhausted humping. Capturing this, and many other elements of parenting, in it’s brief 10-minute run-time, Danny Morgan’s F*ck is a modern love-story, stripped bare of the polished sheen you expect from a romantic tale and replaced with an authentic haze that many will find relatable.
Centred around young parents Adam and Sarah (brilliantly played by Brett Goldstein & Esther Smith), as they try to slip-in a long overdue evening of sexy-time, they constantly find their erotic efforts interrupted by crying babies, discussions about Calpol and post-baby insecurities. F*ck feels like a film that should be mandatory watching for new parents, it’s a short that says “it’s ok, you’re not alone, now stopping being a dick” – but with a bit more warmth. As a viewer you’re instantly struck by its genuine feel, but for me it was the subtle layers of the storytelling that really hit home.
Written and produced by ScreenDaily Stars of Tomorrow 2018 Helen Simmons, Morgan’s film feels like it’s taking you in a somewhat downbeat direction, but then quickly turns into something more positive and warming. It’s not a dramatic twist, or particularly surprising, but emotionally it feels rewarding. As a 40-year old man, with two kids myself, it’s rare I find a film above love and relationships relatable, but F*ck succeeded where many, many others have failed.
It’s not only the relatability that appeals here though, watching Morgan’s short you not only nod along with every recognisable aspect of parenthood or love, F*ck is a film that encourages you to take a look at your own relationship and think about what is important to you. For me, this is what truly appealed about this alternative rom-com, it would be easy to knock the short for being too simple, or lacking originality, but it strikes a sweet balance between charm and authenticity and that self-reflective power it possesses, certainly shouldn’t be overlooked.
Simmons reveals she was inspired to make F*ck after becoming a mother herself, but also admits it was a short designed as an exercise in writing and directing on limited resources. “We didn’t have much money or time (or any proper locations), she explains, “so we decided to come up with a script that was under 10 pages long and could be shot in a day, in a house, and this was the result. We basically wanted to make something relatable, funny and heartwarming, and when Brett and Esther agreed to take part, we knew we could make something special.”