Caught in their daily cares and tiny problems looking big, one can easily forget about themselves and lose their will to break free from the burdens. And when burdens rush in, one finds shelter in living their lives mechanically and fill them up with small worries in order to isolate true responsibility – face who they really want to be. What happens though when one’s retreat in their daily routine turns into an emotional block impossible to beat?
A young man from the council must deliver an eviction warning to a man living in a caravan on a coast. But as he tries to do his job he becomes a prisoner of the indomitable ‘trespasser’.
Joseph Ollman’s characters imprison themselves: the young man, Gwyn, can’t live his dream as he resigned to his own life, bearing the responsibility for his mother and his grandmother who pull him down, while the elder one, Dai, is haunted by a past that obsesses him and made him retreat into his solitude and ‘grow’ a trauma.
‘Meat on Bones’ is a wonderful, subtle exploration of the two characters. While most of what we see is a mask they had taken up to either fit in or retreat from the society, both of them hide unpredictable depths and humanity.
When Gwyn understands Dai’s emotional ‘trauma’ and mirrors that back to him, they both reach ‘ground zero’. The first realises who his peer really is, while the latter is finally forced to admit he is fuelling his hope by feeding it with a forged reality. This extraordinary moment unlocks both Gwyn, who realises his narrow view on people and releases himself from the fear, and Dai, who is finally forced to accept the truth and make piece with himself. The ending is a true ‘rebellion’ against one’s own burdens that flattens and depersonalises them; it is a great escape from the self-fencing of the being.
Joseph Ollman’s film is profoundly touching and humane; a game of psychologies and emotions, an initiatory journey beautifully shot that is meant to educate its heroes and liberate them towards new horizons. When all walls fall, all that’s left is who we really are. In the end we’re all just… ‘Meat on Bones’.