Sapphire and Zoe are two little girls growing up together in the 1970s. Like other girls, they go to school, take dance classes and play together. But unlike others, they grapple with a family secret: their mother is bipolar, and the illness disrupts their lives.
When the mother loses her job, the daughters are forced to grow up early, taking on the role of caring for the person supposed to take care of them.
Writer-directors Florine and Kim Nuesch have crafted a beautiful, sensitive, finely wrought drama about the relationship between parents and children, especially when one of those parents is struggling with a mental illness.
Shot in warm, burnished light and crafted with images that are both resonant and gentle, the storytelling is subtle, attuned to the microcurrents created by shifting subterranean emotions, which ripple out and affect the people around them.
The film is anchored by wonderfully natural performances, and the relationship between mothers and daughters is wholly believable. The family is clearly full of genuine love and affection, but the difficulty in maintaining stability deeply affects the two sisters, who struggle with the uncertainty of never knowing what will happen with their mother.
Semi-autobiographical in nature, “Forget Me Not” is a profoundly moving short that illustrate how mental illness affects not just the one struggling with it, but the loved ones around them. Mental illness is often ignored and many who suffer from them are often excluded from communities. But it’s not just the sick who are isolated, but their most vulnerable loved ones as well.