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No surprises here

OUT NOW! Canadian production BELOW HER MOUTH lives up to its ridiculous title for a borderline insulting and hollow skin flick.

Below Her Mouth sees supposedly straight fashion-magazine editor Jasmine (Natalie Krill) embark on an affair with Dallas (Erika Linder), a commitment-phobic roofer who just can’t take no for an answer. They have sex. Then more sex. And then there’s some character development that will forge some emotional investment more girl-on-girl action. And at some point, Jasmine has to hastily decide in the last 10 minutes between her sanitised life with her safe-bet fiancé (Sebastian Pigott) or take a chance on the edgy free spirit.

Brass tacks: this Canadian production, helmed by actress-turned-director April Mullen, lives up to its ridiculous title and the uninspired character names. The actresses do throw themselves into it, with a script that requires sexually graphic scenes and copious amounts of nudity, but when they’re saddled with a screenplay that thinks it can get away with negligible characterisation by dropping the line “I don’t have the emotional stamina for intimacy,” you know you’re up shit creek. Aside from Stephanie Fabrizi’s howlingly bad dialogue, it doesn’t help that Kirsten Stewart tribute act and charisma-vacuum Erika Linder plays Dallas like a cartoonish dyke archetype, with a delivery as wooden as the pallet crate on which her mattress lies.

If you’re looking for a nuanced and emotionally intoxicating lesbian drama, rewatch Blue is the Warmest Colour or seek out Desiree Akhavan’s criminally undervalued and under-seen Appropriate Behavior. However, if you’re in the market for a borderline insulting and hollow skin flick, then Below Her Mouth is just the ticket.

Below Her Mouth / Directed by April Mullen (Canada, 2016) with Natalie Krill, Erika Linder. Starts April 13.

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