At one end of the sea, there are Americans who speak the same language; they keep repeating themselves because they lack original scripts and the ability to create. On the other side of the sea is a small island called England, where they produce fantastic films, but unfortunately, they don’t receive as much attention as Hollywood. The English excel in scriptwriting and creativity. Both newcomers and experts in the field possess this skill. “Nina Forever,” the debut feature film by Blaine and Chris Blaine in 2016, is one of the most unique and intelligent works. I genuinely enjoyed watching it as someone who doesn’t usually enjoy romantic films. After a series of repetitive films in Hollywood’s “same style,” “Nina Forever” came as a breath of fresh air.
The film begins with a bohemian atmosphere and introduces us to an intriguing character named Holly (Abigail Hardingham). Holly, who may appear troubled from the outside, falls in love with a co-worker named Rob (Cian Barry) and attempts to establish a connection with him. Both characters are introverted and passive individuals, so communication takes place slowly, but eventually, they decide to take their relationship to the next level and spend a romantic night together at home. This is where the film truly begins.
While Holly and Rob engage in passionate lovemaking, the bed becomes drenched in blood. Wondering where the blood is coming from, a hand, a foot, and eyes start to appear from within the bed. Soon, those hands and feet transform into a complete body. Holly and Rob scream in horror and jump out of the bed. In the middle of the bed lies a woman named Nina (Fiona O’Shaughnessy) with a broken leg, pale skin, and blood all over her body. Nina is Rob’s deceased ex-girlfriend. Nina, whose arrival remains a mystery, will now appear every time Holly and Rob engage in intimacy, preventing them from experiencing love.
Until the scene where Nina emerges, I was uncertain about what I was watching, but her appearance added tremendous momentum to the film and left me filled with curiosity. Why does Nina appear, and how? Why only when Holly and Rob are intimate? To find the answers to these questions, of course, you need to watch the film, but for someone like me who seeks unconventional ideas, it is truly an astonishing occurrence. Nina’s mischievous and malevolent nature also enhances the film’s success. She is a witty, sarcastic, and annoying woman who refuses to let go of her beloved despite being dead. Fiona O’Shaughnessy, who portrays Nina, delivers a brilliant performance. The sound of bones and flesh cracking every time Nina moves, due to her being a dead body with multiple fractures, creates a disturbing effect, and I commend the sound mixers for their work. Abigail Hardingham, who plays Holly, excellently portrays a peculiar woman. She does justice to the role of Holly, who must confront the challenges posed by the deceased Nina. In fact, she received the “Best Breakthrough Female” award at the British Independent Film Awards. Unfortunately, the character of Rob is the weakest link in the film.
The directors have filmed the movie with immaculate language. By allowing audacity in the sex scenes, they have made the film realistic. If they deliberately made Nina cover her hair and breasts every time she lies down, it indeed looks beautiful. An idea is valuable when put into action. As long as an idea remains in the mind, it has no meaning. The execution of the idea also needs to be done well. Unfortunately, many great ideas are wasted on the cinema screen. However, “Nina Forever” is not one of them. The directors have crafted a screenplay that is pleasing. The film doesn’t drag on, doesn’t exaggerate, and doesn’t become absurd. It starts off nicely, progresses wonderfully, and concludes very effectively. They have particularly made an excellent choice for the ending. Although it may not be a surprising ending, it is a good choice for such a world.
There is a lot of blood in the film for a romantic comedy. In fact, the excessive use of blood caused it to stick to the actors’ skin. They solved this by mixing lubricant oil with fake blood. Moreover, the film contains an abundance of corpses and repulsiveness, which is what sets it apart. If you’re looking for a new taste and you’re tired of watching the same things, I recommend trying “Nina Forever.” The film captivates you with its engaging characters and bizarre screenplay. I believe you will enjoy and appreciate it. It is a true festival film, which is evident from the 12 awards it has received at different festivals. I can confidently say that it deserves every one of them.
Cast & Crew
director: Ben Blaine, Chris Blaine
writers: Ben Blaine, Chris Blaine
starring: Abigail Hardingham, Cian Barry, Fiona O’Shaughnessy
UK | 2025 | 98 MINUTES |