Best British 2021

Acrimonious

A non-acrimonious, but sudden, divorce wrenches gay, working-class born Emeka out of a decade-long hiatus living the middle-class dream, landing him back in the childhood council house he hoped he'd left behind.

DIRECTOR: Olivia Emden
PRODUCER: Sam Brain and Giannina Rodriguez Rico
WRITER: Olivia Emden and Joseph Akubeze
UK, 15 Minutes

A non-acrimonious, but sudden, divorce wrenches Emeka out of a decade-long hiatus living the “middle-class” dream, landing him back in the childhood council house he hoped he’d left behind. It’s that Eliza Doolittle conundrum—once you’ve sort of become a “lady,” is it ever really possible to fit into the flower market again?

Set against the backdrop of multicultural, Leave-voting, West London constituency of Hayes and Harlington, the story follows working-class born, gay, British-Nigerian, millennial divorcee, Emeka. Yes, a move back home might mean cheap rent, but with it comes gargantuan commutes (no thanks to the long-overdue, but non-existent Crossrail) and a confrontation, not only with his heartbreak, but also with exactly where, if anywhere, he now fits in…

Acrimonious is Olivia’s directorial debut. For the past few years, she’s been making her way as an actor, screenwriter and script editor, both independently and with co-writer, Joseph Akubeze. As a writing duo, they have several projects in various stages of development, including commissions with Channel 4, BBC Studios, Lookout Point, Raw, Studio Pictures Ltd, Open Book and Easter Partisan.


BACK TO FILMSNext film