Words: Lauren Demarest
This is a love story that transcends age, gender, sexual orientation, ability, and so much more. Told from two different sides, the viewer gets to experience the two strikingly different perspectives of the two women in Two Of Us – Madeleine (Mado) and Nina.
Mado as a mother of adult children, a widow, and most crucial to this story – the secret lover of Nina across the hall. She is unable to reconcile all of these roles, finding it impossible to reveal the truth of her sexual identity to her children. Her silence, we discover as the movie builds, has very heavy consequences.
At a critical point in an unexpected plot twist, the perspective shifts, and we delve into the “Us vs Them” theme seeing Nina for the ‘outsider’ she is. She is from another country, with no outwardly obvious ties to the place she has chosen to call home, and is therefore suspicious to everyone around her.
In her quest to be with Mado, Nina is defying the wishes of Mado’s children, her caretaker, and seemingly the world. Her life is an empty shell without Mado. In her heart and quite literally. As she has no belongings to speak of.
This film explores many facets of love, and what it can do to us. At times revealing a desperation we have all felt. We see a woman, who to the outside world seems unhinged, with stalker-like tendencies. The viewer follows every poor choice made in the name of togetherness with an empathy that Meneghetti masterfully draws out of each viewer.
The story also delves into the role reversal of parent and child. And how those lines seem to be blurry when age, accidents, or medical attention become factors.
In the end, we revel in the healing powers of love and sob at the cruel fate our lovers find before them. Can love conquer all? Unacceptance from family? Poverty? Health problems? It’s up to the viewer in this beautiful film.