Love or Lust (2016) review

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Recently dumped by his younger girlfriend, Mark finds himself back in the arms of his college sweetheart Julie in the independent feature Love or Lust.

love or lust

Everybody has been there at some point in their lives – the dreaded break-up of a relationship. Some find cracks which, over time, open up more to a point where things can’t be healed or, like in Mark’s instance, things can happen totally out-of-the-blue. Mark was expecting a nice weekend jaunt away with his girlfriend of ten years, Steph, but all he received is to find himself dumped by a girl who would rather tell her friends on Facebook that she is now single before telling him. I’m sure we can all agree that was a tad harsh.

All though he is obviously distraught and feeling low, Mark soon finds himself rekindling a romance with Julie, his college girlfriend who was also his first love. The relationship starts to blossom again, but Mark soon starts to put hurdles in place in the form of jealousy.

Simon Boisvert doubles up as lead actor (Mark) performing his own screenplay. He does well with his material, as do the other actors around him, including Izabelle Moreau (Julie), Jillian Harris (Steph) and Bruce Dinsmore (Steve). Boisvert and Moreau in particular, have some great on screen chemistry and make for a believable couple.

love or lustDirected by Christian Belz Parenteau, Love or Lust is very dialogue-heavy and, even though the dialogue is well-written and performed by the actors well, one can’t help but want a little break from seeing characters talking scene-after-scene. When we did get a break from dialogue, what we got was a rather, uncomfortable medium close-up two-shot of Mark and Julie snogging, with added moans and tongues for a bigger effect.

Love or Lust is actually a well made film. Many of the shots are fluid and nicely framed with no awkward cuts that are added just for the sake of cutting; meaning the scenes flow.  Though I did find some shots to be hot in terms of the lighting. The audio is crisp throughout and the score is composed great to match the romantic drama on screen.

All though we have seen many “romantic” films before, Love or Lust is unconventional and makes for a different viewing. Whilst parts can be sickly sweet, Christian Belz Parentea and Simon Boisvert make sure that they place their own stamp on the genre with a story that is not all “fairy tale” with a side order of realism.

Love or Lust is easily identified as a low budget independent film, but with enough positives to make for a good watch. I enjoyed it.

3.5 / 5 stars     

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