Let me tell you dear Readers, watching this 2015 movie and seeing Poppy Drayton in a lesbian role was pretty shocking! Shocking, because I had just seen her play a Disney Princess role as a mermaid in the Live Action version of THE LITTLE MERMAID! There was literally only a week apart from me seeing the Little Mermaid and then watching Writers Retreat! It was almost as weird as seeing Chloe Grace Morez in THE MISEDUCATION OF CAMERON POST!
And I told you I don’t go out looking for movies with this type of ships! They just seem to find me these days! It is not an easy pill to swallow, especially since this is a 2015 movie, way before even SHANNARA Chronicles (*winkwink*) but believe me, they just find me!
There are some roles you don’t expect actors to take and Chloe and Poppy taking on lesbian roles is one of them! I mean, we all dream of them taking such roles but we dream because they seem unlikely, well, these days apparently everything is possible! Now if only that extended to my life! I am in need of that lotto win!
Anyway back to the movie at hand, I have mentioned it a couple of times already but I am a huge sucker for couples that save one another, especially those who are willing to give up their lives for their loved ones! I mean, there is no higher respect or stronger love than that which would make anyone do anything in their power to save their Loves, even if it cost them their very lives!
This is the case here! Sorry to dump this on you just like that but hey, this movie has been out since 2015, even though that’s no excuse as I have only just discovered it as well! But yeah, Jo (Poppy’s character), had a BAD END but this does not mean the movie was shit or if this is just another bury-your-gays cliché! I mean okay, we buried a gay but it is much more than that! It made sense here in the story and it wasn’t just thrown in just ‘cause!
The movie is about a bunch of struggling writers who take a retreat to improve their writing skills as kind of a workshop! Our main Zandra (Camilla), is one of the two distinguished writers in charge of the event! But she too obviously has issues of her own and I am disappoint in the movie for note playing off of that, especially it being a thriller bordering on horror. Which makes you wonder why she looked so haunted and drained all the time! You always think something is going to happen with her in regards to her state of mind but it is never brought up!
As to why this is bordering on horror, you see among the writers there is a veteran who used to serve and if his morbid stories didn’t give things away, he went on a killing spree with a dose of torturous sadism included on all the writers! Them being on a secluded island and their phones confiscated didn’t help matters at all! To no one’s surprise, and which makes this more of a horror, other than the cruelty of course, is the fact that there was only one survivor – Zandra of course!
But she only survives because of Jo! Or maybe you could say that she saved Jo first in return Jo saved her but it took Jo’s life to save Zandra! This of course brings me nicely to their relationship! Jo being a young and upcoming writer, it makes sense that she would have heard of Zandra, especially if she was enrolling in one of her projects. But not only has she heard of Zandra but she is also a huge Fan of her! She even took some books written by Zandra with her on the island and she was reading them in her free time!
What’s interesting, and where the movie kind of scraped the outskirts of the issue with Zandra that I have, is that they both were affecting each other! Jo for obviously reasons but Zandra got some much needed feedback about her work from someone who cared enough and was critical enough to give her honest opinion of Zandra’s work. While other writers might have learned something from Zandra and her buddy, Zandra took something away from the project from the perspective she got from Jo.
Jo pushed her in a direction that her life so required but Zandra did not see or simply did not have the courage nor the motivation to aim towards! In fact I think it was because of Jo that gave Zandra’s life meaning and that spark to want to live again! She really looked dead! But Jo came into her life like a new battery to charge her up again and power some much needed energy in her!
First Zandra was really detached, like I think most writers are! She was probably filled with so much tension that it was eating away at her but the friendliness and human approach and affection given to her by Jo begun to set her right. Until the kiss, which was initiated by Jo of course, which saw Zandra finally lose the rest of her inhibitors and come into her new self! The way she responded and reacted was like she was finally opened up and was finally free!
Of course after time had passed and she had thought of things, really thought of things, she did what most people would do – go into a denial phase! And sadly it was during this that shit hit the fan. I would have liked some time for them to work things out before that but I guess this way there is an extra oomph in the FEELs department if Zandra notices her true feelings too late. Though really, it was too late!
The remainder of the writers are kidnapped by the killer and poor Jo is hurt real bad in the process! She not only has a knife sticking out of her bloody thigh but she was also beat up pretty bad, oh her beautiful face! That monster!
But even as injured as she was, even as out of it as she was, really, she looked like she was about to kick the bucket but she hang on! Even in that state she still managed to play the hero and save her girl! While their kidnapper was busy torturing one of them, a tied up Zandra crawled closer to Jo and struggling pulled the knife out of Jo’s thigh to cut their binds and escape! Okay, I take it back, that’s Jo 2 to Zandra’s 1! I mean so what if Zandra carried them away from the house! Without the knife they would still be there and definitely both dead meat!
Getting away was almost impossible! Their kidnapper was chasing them while Zandra had to carry a barely conscious Jo! It was inevitable that the killer would catch up to them and he did! And once again Jo helped fight him off even in her state! She probably couldn’t even see anything anymore! But she still fought!
Eventually it was too much for them! After knocking out Zandra, the killer turned to Jo who had distracted him from finishing off a unconscious Zandra! He dragged her into the water and drowned her! Like, how much suffering poor Jo had to go through! When Zandra awoke it was too late even as she managed to kill a distracted killer on Jo’s throat!
Actually I kind of blame Zandra for Jo’s death! The drowning had obviously just happened! She could have at least tried CPR on Jo, but did she? Nope! I have seen people, well, characters, come back from much worse deaths! Come on, do better!
Okay, maybe these writers were really going for the bury your gays thing! I mean, it was so 2015! That was still a thing back then! Oh well, no use crying over spilled tea and Jo was just so marvellous in her last moments that nothing is going to take that shine and grandness of her from me or her!
So yeah, kind of a drama, kind of a thriller and also kind of a horror movie! Is it great as a movie? Just widen your palate dear Readers, it will make your lives easier! But of course I will recommend it because of the usual gayness and POPPY damn DRAYTON being gay!!!!!!
Go watch it! As usual, ending the note on screen caps…