Hot Docs 2016: LoveTrue

Reality and fantasy combine in the search for the meaning of true love in LoveTrue. Utilizing actors to portray their past and future selves, three individuals seek to demystify the fantasy of true love. Blake and Joel are two Alaskans trying to make their relationship work, despite Blake being a stripper and Joel suffering from osteogenesis imperfecta, which makes his bones extremely brittle. In Hawaii, Coconut Willie has to deal with the discovery that he is not the biological father of his son. Finally in New York City, singer Victory deals with her father’s separation from his wife.

LoveTrue is part relationship documentary and part experimental reality/fantasy hybrid. The film alternates between its three separate stories, as it seeks to answer the question of what exactly is true love. To help accomplish this, the film utilizes individuals playing the subjects’ past and future selves, as the film contrasts the people these individuals were to who they might become.

While the premise of LoveTrue undoubtedly sounds interesting on paper, the execution of this hybrid documentary ends up being a bit on the confusing side. Without knowing the goals of the film in advance, it can be difficult to tell what exactly LoveTrue is trying to accomplish, with the film being close to the end before I finally started getting what it was trying it say. It’s almost a shame, since the relationship stories, particularly Blake’s, are quite interesting on their own.

6 / 10 stars


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Sean Kelly Author

Sean Patrick Kelly is a self-described über-geek, who has been an avid film lover for all his life. He graduated from York University in 2010 with an honours B.A. in Cinema and Media Studies and he likes to believe he knows what he’s talking about when he writes about film (despite occasionally going on pointless rants).