After initially doing the rounds at a number of film festivals, then circulated by Film Movement and subsequently picked up on Netflix, “I Am Yours” is one of those films you are truly thankful was able to find its way onto your screen. Holding 100% on Rotten Tomatoes, and the Norwegian Oscar Submission in 2013, it is clear I am not alone in rating this film so highly.
It tells the story of a young woman who struggles to establish a balance between wants, needs and desires. A divorced, young, single mother of Pakistani heritage living in Norway, her conflicted situation is not an easy one to navigate.
This young woman is Mina (Amrita Acharia), an aspiring actress who adores her son Felix (Prince Singh), but longs for a youthful and exciting relationship as well. Seemingly the two are mutually exclusive and ultimately unachievable. Mina’s mother who also lives in Norway, follows a traditional way of life and tries to force this on Mina with little success. Caught between the two, Mina remains a troubled soul, trying tot strike a balance between satisfying her own needs and meeting everyone else’s expectations of her.
She tests the waters with one-night stands, but her frail nature leaves her open to manipulation, especially when all seems to be going fine. As she ploughs head on into the first hint of a relationship, her son is seen not as the centre of her universe, but more as an obstacle to infinite happiness.
I Am Yours is brutally honest, and this debut feature from Iram Haq has successfully conveyed an interesting and memorable story into a near flawless film. Owed largely to Haq drawing from her own experiences, as she shared a similar upbringing with our main protagonist, also experiencing inadequate preparation or guidance of how to handle what lay ahead; This is her story, it speaks from the heart and it shows.
However, the films real star is Amrita Acharia, who gave a performance that does not come along all that often. Commanding each frame with a simple glance, conveying a wealth of emotions through a series of increasingly intimate scenes. It is an ultimately frustrating performance, as she slips further down this maddening path of self-fulfilment and idealistic fairytale romance in a state of playful abandon, yet you remain sympathetic, because for all her bad decisions, you hope she finds happiness.
It is a smart, great looking film, that not only manages to capture part of Iram Haq’s life so well, but manages to highlight the fragility and vulnerability of relationships. It is one of life’s situations that can leave you feeling both immensely secure but equally exposed. You are always trying to protect the solid footing you think you have, yet trying to constantly achieve a higher level of happiness, it is no wonder your judgement can become clouded very easily.
I Am Yours (Jeg Er Din) is available on Netflix & Amazon.