Bickford Park (2017) dir. Linsey Stewart & Dane Clark
A marriage or any other long-term relationship means navigating the push and pull of desires. The desire that brings a couple together in the first place can split into competing desires to maintain that connection and to carve out spaces for yourself, the comfort of the familiar versus the instinct to explore something new. One side’s persistence may be the other’s stagnation. It’s no wonder that couples can go a little mad sometimes.
“A little mad” is an aptly gentle description for the actions of the heroine of “Bickford Park,” a short from the filmmaking duo Linsey Stewart and Dane Clark. Jill’s after-dark skateboarding isn’t the stuff of Penthouse letters, but shielding it from her husband is a kind of betrayal nonetheless. Unreported time can be a healthy thing in a relationship, but where’s the line between “me time” and an emotional affair?
That the writer/directors are themselves married to each other earns it bonus points for honesty. Stewart and Clark consistently demonstrate heart and humor and hope, even in darker scenarios like their lone comedy feature I Put a Hit On You where one side of a couple drunkenly hires a hitman on craigslist to murder the other. The hapless husband of “Bickford Park” should count himself lucky to escape with the injury he has.