Daniel Fawcett’s DIRT is a heartfelt look at a young person’s difficulty fitting in with the adult world and a wish to recapture that childhood feeling of being ‘free’. The film follows Miles, running from an unsatisfying life and dead-end job, after he encounters Francis – an unconventional man who prefers to produce art by ‘living creatively’ – and goes to spend time on his run-down boat. Early on they encounter Lucy, a young girl with her own personal issues. The trio quickly bond and go on an adventure to try and break free from their troubles.
Between his cast’s talents and his direction and writing, Fawcett has crafted three very well realised characters.
Shot mostly on DV, in combination with 8mm film, DIRT is a very personal picture with Fawcett allowing his cast to flesh out their characters – to which the audience will undoubtedly be able to relate to. A wish to maintain an unburdened youth underpins the motives of all three lead characters and their actions across the film speaks to that in their audience.
The acting is strong, one scene between Miles and Lucy giving real emotional depth to the characters as they open up to one another. Vito Maraula’s enjoyable performance as the charismatic Francis also has great screen presence. Between his cast’s talents and his direction and writing, Fawcett has crafted three very well realised characters.
The film is not perfect, with a couple of stylistic flourishes in the middle feeling out of place, but DIRT is an excellent feature with good acting, a memorable soundtrack and themes that anyone watching can relate to.