Review: Love Me Tinder @ Kinofilm festival, Manchester

Love Me Tinder is a melancholy tale of love and loneliness in a time when traditional routes to love are breaking down and solitude is accepted as the norm by many.

The film aptly captures the awkwardness of two desperate people battling their own self-loathing whilst trying to force a connection with another human being.

The characters blindly edge around the transient social customs of modern society and battle their insecurities in an attempt to end their isolation and recover past happiness. 

The flashback memories of the male protagonist, played by Tom Lorcan, provide fleeting glimpses of his past life: his memories like sealed windows to worlds that once represented opportunity and freedom, but now only serve as a reminder of all that has been lost.

This is echoed by the location in which the film is set, bottled within the walls of a pokey flat, connected only to a rarely-seen outside world by a darkened, narrow corridor.

As the flashbacks become our only route to understanding the world beyond, a feeling of isolation swells, and the characters’ isolation is emphasised.

Despite the themes of loneliness, desperation and abandonment, Love Me Tinder is a comedy and an effective one too.

Alastair Donegan’s script is smartly written and the actions of both characters are both very relatable and funny, accentuating the tragedy whilst also alleviating the audiences’ cringing pain, allowing them to peek through their fingers to watch.

Awkward silences and the mundane small talk used in a failing attempt to break them strongly juxtapose flashback images of dying romance and love lost, mirroring the loneliness that many feel as they pursue elusive love in a society they feel lost to.

The film’s dialogue smartly encapsulates the essence of small talk as the characters, attempting to break the ice, cool the conversation far beyond freezing point.

Similarly, Sami Abusamra’s smart direction beautifully captures the descent of two hopeful romantics from hope to desperation and ultimate despairing surrender.

The framing is intimate, yet uncomfortably real – always lingering a little too long, leaving the watcher with ground teeth and wrinkled eye.

The film’s star Lorcan is a man so crushed by an emotional past that he struggles to function around women, alongside well-known face of British TV, Caroline Quentin (Dickensian, Men Behaving Badly) as an older woman looking to break her alienation and make a human connection.

The acting is thoroughly believable – both actors recognise the subtlest of human traits in their portrayals – and aids the film’s complex but subtle and humorous portrayal of humanity and pain. 

It is because of this that onlookers will really care when these two characters, only present in their lives for 15 minutes, return, rejected, to their solitude.

Love Me Tinder has a lot of desirable qualities and is a fascinating watch, its nuanced and painfully funny critique of modern love is incredibly relevant and worthy of a much wider audience.

You can catch Love Me Tinder at this year’s Kinofilm Festival. To find out more, click here.

Image courtesy of Sami Abusamra, via YouTube, with thanks

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