'This Is Our Love Letter To Britain' - Watch A Short Film Exploring Diversity In The UK

Two young British filmmakers are here to remind you why the UK is great.

MOST POPULAR

Not to state the obvious, but 2017 has been an absolute shocker of a year. And, unless you've manage to avoid all human interaction over the last 365 days, that'll sadly come as no surprise. From the shitshow that is Brexit to atrocities at Westminster, Manchester, London Bridge, and Finsbury Park, along with obvious rising tensions amongst British people, you'd be forgiven for booking a one-way ticket out of here.

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

But two young directors are on a mission to remind you that, actually, the UK is a pretty great place to live. In the face of soaring hate crimes, Jay Stephen and Ralph Briscoe decided to make a film about our beautifully diverse country. Or, rather, to make 'something that was truly British.'

'Unfortunately being patriotic in Britain usually has negative connotations,' explains Stephen, 'and we wanted to reshape this perspective.We are a tolerant country and that is something we should be proud of.'

The film, titled My Turtle Dove (Cockney rhyming slang for love), was shot over five days and is viewed through the eyes of four main characters, all with a range of ethnicities and sexual orientations. Stephen and Briscoe directed the film, while music is by UK house producer TCTS, and Francis Lane (of Silent Tapes) came on board as director of photography.

It's rare you find diversity in front of camera as well as behind (ahem, Hollywood), but Stephen herself is a British woman with Indian parents. And, as she says, 'This project showcases what it means to be British, and represents the importance of standing together and promoting a positive message.'

ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Locations are important, too. Footage taken at Notting Hill Carnival and Pride captures the beauty and tolerance of modern-day multicultural Britain, but we're also reminded of our capacity for hate. One scene, featuring a young Muslim boy, was shot in Finsbury Park, north London, near the mosque where a van drove into a crowd of worshippers back in June. One person died and 11 were injured.

The film's love story, featuring two young gay guys, was shot along Brighton Promenade, just over a year after two men, James and Dain, were severely assaulted in the same location for their sexuality.

'At times like these, it's more important than ever to put forward a message of inclusion and unity,' says Briscoe. 'We set out to make a film to remind people of all the great things about our country. This is our love letter to Britain.'

The result? A strikingly moving film with a message that is needed more now than ever. Created on a budget of under £2K, and featuring only the filmmaker's mates as models, My Turtle Dove truly captures the spirit of being British today.

Watch the film below:

My Turtle Dove from Jay Stephen & Ralph Briscoe on Vimeo.

More from ELLE UK: