Michelle Brunette’s short documentary Bloom is a difficult film to watch, emotionally — especially if you’ve had a film student in the family or among your friends — but that’s what gives it a touch of greatness. The National Screen Institute apparently felt the same way, selecting the film for a spot in its Online Short Film Festival.
Seeking a standout idea for an assignment in her Sheridan College film course, Michelle turns to her years-long fascination with actor Orlando Bloom. She’s covered her wall with pictures of him, but now she sets a definite goal to meet him by her 20th birthday — and document the process on film.
It all starts out in just the way you’d expect: Michelle’s friends and family (even the uncle who once gave her a life-size Bloom cutout) lightheartedly tell her she’s weird. She launches a social media campaign to gather support and exposure. She meets with people who may be able to help. Then . . .
A lot of nothing happens. Michelle never hears back from many of those she’s reached out to. Her filmmaking partner drops out of the project to save their friendship. This isn’t the only personal connection that seems to be damaged by the project, as hurtful Facebook comments appear. Michelle sheds some tears, and doesn’t flinch from doing it on camera.
Finally, admitting it’s been “a roller-coaster ride”, she says it’s “time to focus on me.” And . . . let’s just say that is the right move.
The roller-coaster ride is tough, but worth it.