I’m 24 years old, and I have never been in a fight. Not because I’ve never had the opportunity, but because I don’t consider myself to be a violent person. But there's a part of me, as in most men, that feels the need to prove myself. Whenever I tell anyone this, their responses are the same. Even in 2017, our culture tells us that by never having been in a fight, we’re missing out. That it’s an important right of passage for young men.
"Ultimately, this story is a cautionary tale, of what happens when the old-world model of masculinity collapses. Of emotional repression and its devastating consequences."
Young men are brought up to feel they would be breaking a set of unwritten male ideals if they were to express their emotions. They bottle things up until they’re overwhelmed, and often consumed, by them.
Suicide is the leading cause of death of young men in the UK.
In a world where manual labour is declining, the traits associated with violent aggression are becoming increasingly redundant. And yet there is still a fear of seeming soft, tender, weak, or somehow less than manly. This insecurity is perhaps the most stalwart defining feature of toxic masculinity.
Putting an act of violence at the centre of the story created an inherent tension and pressure on our protagonist. This story strives to place the audience in a conundrum. We watch the events unfold and urge him to act, but subliminally we already know that its too late to reverse the damage caused by a society plagued by an outdated concept of masculinity.
- Director, Chris Fowles