Party-girl Nora drinks too much, can’t hold down a job and pushes away everyone she loves. After her long-suffering boyfriend throws her out, Nora is forced to move back home with her aging father. Once inside her childhood home, the ghosts of her past begin to haunt her until the secret she has buried for so long is finally revealed.
Genre : Drama
Country : UK
Katharine Lee McEwan : Nora
Sarina Taylor : Shannon
Kevin McGowan : Arthur
“I spent the rest of my life trying to understand what I’d done wrong.
All those years I spent on the bottle fucking up my life.
And if you could’ve just reached out, just told me why you’d done it.”
“Solitary” is the solid proof that dramas from the UK won’t guarantee proper acting, professional camera work and an impressive script. Such a movie as for instance “Broken“, which made an everlasting impression on me. These characteristic qualities were largely lacking in this drama, so it felt more like an episode feuilleton from some English soap. It’s understandable why Nora (Katharine Lee McEwan) is rebellious in nature and she clearly has a drinking problem. But it all felt a bit too forced.
First of all, I didn’t think Nora showed similarities with that of a true alcoholic. Curiously, she still looked pretty fresh, even though her friend David (Michael Wildman) says she’s constantly drunk or has a hangover. However, if you consider Nora’s situation, you would start drinking as well. Her life hasn’t been a bed of roses. On the one hand her mother, who also disliked tap water, died early. Her sister Shannon (Sarina Taylor) is a successful business woman, while Nora is sitting unemployed at home. And then there’s the matter with her father Arthur (Kevin McGowan). The moment she is forced to move back to her father, after her friend David has closed the door behind her, it soon goes downhill and the consequences are subsequently disastrous.
It doesn’t feel appropriate to tell more about this movie. Otherwise there isn’t much left anymore. “Solitary” is a low-budget drama. And that’s noticable when you look at the acting performances. At times, dialogues are of the same level as “Coronation street“. Strange but true, the supporting roles are more impressive. Michael Wildman as the kindhearted friend showing the most patience in this movie. Anna Skellern playing Lisa, Nora’s best friend. She’s also someone who developed some strong shoulders for her friend to support on during difficult times. And Jack Lowe plays a modest role as Tommy, future husband of Lisa. But especially Kevin McGowan is really brilliant at times.
So, not the two sisters convinced the most. The relationship between both sisters is not really credible. The dialogues were sometimes really silly and amateurish. I understand Nora’s distance towards her sister. But the reconciliation gesture at the end was a bit ridiculous. Lets not start about some of the smaller roles, such as the inmates in the women’s prison. That was extremely bad. Also the footage really wasn’t high quality. Take a random episode of “Eastenders” and you already have an idea of what it looks like. What remains, is a common drama about abuse (on multiple levels) and the resulting trauma. Not a suitable movie to sacrifice your free evening.