Ben and Chris Blaine’s off-the-wall love story is no doubt one of this year’s most unique films, taking a tale of love and loss to a place it has never been before with a talking corpse between the sheets. In Nina Forever, Holly and Rob’s newfound relationship gets complicated when Rob’s dead ex-girlfriend comes back to life to sarcastically torment them whenever they have sex. Yeah, it gets weird.
Nina Forever is not your everyday story of romance, nor is it your typical horror movie either—in fact, the film walks a much different path and it’s one that focuses on dealing with loss and how you pick up the pieces that death leaves behind. It’s a wonderful approach to such an odd concept, and definitely not the direction I imaged the film going at first.
The idea of a bloody corpse that materializes in the bed of a couple while they’re having sex is some freaky shit, no doubt, but it’s interesting that the film never makes Nina a monster—not in the traditional sense, anyway. Sure, Nina does torment Rob and Holly, but it felt more like she was there as a reminder of how not being able to let go of something can haunt you forever. And that’s one of the film’s strengths, too—is that a lot of how you view Nina is up to interpretation. I’m sure there’s a lot of hidden meanings behind the narrative—especially Nina—which gives the film a multi-layered quality to it.
And interestingly enough, the film’s protagonist isn’t even Rob (you’d think it would be, seeing as how it’s his ex-girlfriend that keeps comes back from the dead), it’s Holly, who tries to make the relationship work despite the fact that a corpse quite literally gets between her and Rob. Her character is especially compelling, and probably Nina Forever’s biggest strength, because she adds such a wonderfully complex piece to the story, so much so that she’s really hard to figure out… even after the movie is over. And that speaks to how different this film really is—nothing plays out the way you expect it to (and I mean nothing), and it’s nice to see a couple of filmmakers embrace such an insane idea.
It is on the slower side and it does get pretty weird (which might be off-putting for some), but Nina Forever has a twisted charm to it that’s hard to deny and it’s all brought to life by an undead corpse. It’s hard to put a finger on what exactly Nina Forever is—it blurs the genre lines in a fantastic way, and in doing so, it finds its own unique voice. And while I would have liked to have seen the film push its concept a little further by digging deeper into the supernatural element of Nina, there’s still plenty here to love.