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‘Boys Feels: I Love Trouble’ review

NQV Media’s ‘Boys Feels’ series continues with third instalment ‘Boys Feels: I Love Trouble’. Unlike the other strands that NQV have been releasing, the ‘Boys Feels’ collections don’t explore queer life but take a look at shorts that are similarly themed and pinpoint specific moments in the life of boys. Bringing together five shorts that explore masculinity and peer pressure, these coming of age tales introduce the viewer to a variety of different boys from across the globe including the Netherlands, Lithuania and France.

Opening with Dutch director Sarah Veltmeyer’s ‘Gotta’, viewers are introduced to Leon (Jordy Coens), a young boy who lives in a quiet port town. As he grows closer to becoming an adult, he struggles to deal with his mother’s relationship with a new man, and that stirs up plenty of frustration and confusion within him. The short perfectly explores the conflicting feelings that young people have when their family unit changes, and this is a story that I could personally relate to.

The second short is Lithuanian film-maker Gabrielė Urbonaitė’s ‘The Last Day of School’, which tells the story of two old friends who decide to try and make ‘easy’ money by smuggling cigarettes from Belarus across the border. It’s a story of temptation and the lure of money, with Edgaras (Lukas Auksoraitis) prepared to jeopardise his promising future by harking back to his old ways. Gabrielė Urbonaitė shows how peer pressure can derail a young boy, something that happens time and time again.

Simon Guélat’s ‘Tree House’ and Giancarlo Sánchez’s ‘Gameboy’ both focus on groups of young friends. In ‘Tree House’ four teenagers illegally gather on a military zone to build a tree house and it’s about the passing of time and adolescence, while ‘Gameboy’ sees four friends stealing exam papers and selling them to their classmates to make money, which prompts them to consider their futures and whether dishonesty is something they want to continue. Both shorts highlight young people at crossroads with big choices to make with each director taking very different, but equally effective, approaches.

Michaël Dichter’s ‘Pollux’ rounds out the collection and takes place in a small French town where three friends race against time to make enough money to be able to go to summer camp after their parents lose their jobs and can’t afford to send them. Dichter dives into the tenacity and drive that youngster have when their sights are set on something they don’t feel they can lose.

‘Boys Feels: I Love Trouble’ is the strongest release in the strand to date. All of these shorts are relatable to us men that have gone through the trials and tribulations of adolescence. While they may all take place in different parts of the world, the shorts reinforce the idea that our experiences are often similar and relatable, regardless of our backgrounds.

Boys Feels: I Love Trouble
Credit: NQV Media

Cast: Jordy Coens, Lukas Auksoraitis, Thijs Boermans Directors: Sarah Veltmeyer, Gabrielė Urbonaitė, Simon Guélat, Giancarlo Sánchez, Michaël Dichter Certificate: 18 Duration: 97 mins Released by: NQV Media Buy ‘Boys Feels: I Love Trouble’ now

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Pip Ellwood-Hughes
Pip Ellwood-Hughes
Pip is the Editor of Entertainment Focus and the Managing Director of agency Piñata Media.

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