Mouth to Mouth

| June 10, 2006

Sherry is a 15 year old runaway who meets and joins a street collective called SPARK (Street People Armed with Radical Knowledge) and travels with them across Europe recruiting members and searching for herself as they approach what they consider their nirvana – a vineyard they have mysteriously acquired in Spain.
While Sherry seeks self enlightenment, her mother Rose is searching for her. Upon finding the group, Rose hangs around and finally joins it – thereby eliminating the entire coolness factor for Sherry.
Mouth to Mouth is the story of Sherry, who pays a heavy price to find herself and Rose, who pays the same price to go back to a youth she feels she missed.
Director Alison Murray cites George Orwell’s Animal Farm as a classical inspiration for this story of a group of people who give away their individuality and freedom in order to be accepted by the security of The Group. While watching it, I felt more like Lord of the Flies. It could be because the people in the collective rarely showered, but it was more the feeling of impending doom that hangs over the movie.
Sherry is played by Ellen Page. She just opened in X-Men: The Last Stand playing Kitty Pryde who can travel through solid matter. In that film, she seems so physically small compared to the other characters than in Mouth to Mouth that I was very surprised that it was the same actress in both films. We should watch her career unfold.
The rest of the cast is filled with relative unknowns who play wonderful parts. Natasha Wightman (Gosford Park) plays Rose and Maxwell McCabe-Lokos ( The Sentinel) plays the most interesting roll, Mad Ax, a recovering drug addict who goes along with the group without ever fully trusting it – like a beat up dog that wants affection but is not ready to take the master’s collar that goes with it.
Even though there are some story points that go unanswered and unexplained, is very much worth hunting down for a viewing. Though it will probably end up being on the video shelf with most of the other worthy independent films.

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