Directed by Des Matelske | Review by Nabadipa Talukder
[dropcap]D[/dropcap]es Matelske’s Swipe Right is the story of a girl who is constantly struggling with her sexuality and her romantic life and her mother’s acceptance of her homosexuality. Liv’s (Dani Matelske) mother (Leigh A. Peterson) is driven by the urgency to find her a man so that she would finally lose her interest in women and settle down with a man. She even disguises herself as Liv, talks to men and arranges dinner dates for her daughter on a dating website. The story goes around how Liv finds love and how a date unexpectedly turns into a friend and maneuvers her to finally achieve what Liv always wanted through a series of witty as well as emotional events.
The story begins at a restaurant where Liv with all her existential angst meets few odd dates with a blasé attitude. She meets a stud, a stoner who tries to sell her some weed, a creep, an awkwardly quiet man and she even goes on to meet two gay men who show up on the date as a couple and take her by surprise when they start kissing. Not giving up, her mother sends her to yet another date where she meets Carter (Lance Still). Carter is both flabbergasted and disappointed when Liv tells him that she is gay. It gets even worse when she tells him the person who has been messaging him all this time was her mother. For the rest of the night, she is pretty ruthless leaving him perplexed.
On returning from the date her mother rushes to her with the thrill to know about the date but Liv’s disinterest in meeting these men disgruntles her mother. Having been disappointed she seeks the suggestion of her gay best friend Jason (Cody Kilpatrick Steele) and gets a makeover and asks her to meet Jason again on a date just to continue with this “balderdash” while he finds a girl for her. But Carter comes up with another idea when he mentions his sister Cassie (Julia Langholt) who happens to be gay. Eventually Liv meets Cassie but at the same time she pretends that she’s dating Carter, for the sake of her mother. This marks the beginning of Liv’s happiness because she can finally do what she always wanted, to be with a girl and to her utmost surprise being helped by Carter to top it all.
This uncomplicated plot with a complicated twist reveals a heartwarming story of a mother-daughter relationship with a sensitive backdrop reflecting the horrors of the past and their impersonation in today’s events. Films like this connect its audiences and encouraged them to open up in a social portal through media helping them to change their perspective on socio-cultural taboos. It also portrays how self-identity and its recognition are so important and change of situations or circumstances can never hamper what one truly feels. What we are and how we are born cannot be changed and the orthodox, biased and prejudiced mentality of people can be wavered and comprehended with time and patience and love most importantly. We need more films like this to show a personal outlook which would create a niche amongst us to understand the LGBTQ community and its acceptance. The story unfolds various perks of having such a light comedy and why a strong message sometimes doesn’t need a heavy storyline. It also shows how we should step outside our comfort zone and explore and define something that could be perceived differently by different strata of the society.
Dr. Nabadipa Talukder is a doctor by profession with a passion for creative writing and has been into digital content writing for almost 5 years now. She practiced as a dental professional for two years in Kolkata before she quit her job in order to pursue a career in writing. Nabadipa was exposed to the freedom to write for various fronts which opened up her mind and introduced her to the world of screenplay and script writing. She wishes to travel and understand various cultures and wishes to write their stories.