There is an evocative command to Sophy Romvari’s It’s What Each Person Needs that engrosses you with the greatest of ease. She has perfectly encapsulated the power and importance of connecting with another person – just a fantastic short.
A portrait of a young woman providing companionship for juxtaposing demographics.
Conversations come in all weird and wonderful forms, and it is very easy to forget how integral they are to your well-being. Whether that is needing a conversation to feel something arousing, to feel some joy thanks to compliments, or even just to feel heard and recognised. We need these to get through the day, go without conversations for too long, and it becomes noticeable within your soul that something is missing. Sophy Romvari has perfectly encapsulated the importance of a connection, no matter how minor.
When we get one specific call for Becca Willow Moss to answer, though, it feels as if the entire point of the film has been spun around, the other shoe has dropped, and we get a fascinating, candid moment between Moss and her caller. The interactions already engrossed you as they were, but suddenly you feel yourself leaning in that little bit more, fascinated by what you are seeing and hearing.
Post the worst of the pandemic, It’s What Each Person Needs is a film that showcases how important our need for a connection is. As if we had forgotten or taken for granted how much we needed to communicate and connect with another person. By living through this situation, our need to branch out and get an immediate connection grew, we realised what we were missing. While Moss talks to the see’s the people on the other end of her chats, there still feels as if something is missing, the physical need to communicate. So Romvari focuses softly on her subject’s hands, the part of our body that we would do the most physical connecting with.
Throughout It’s What Each Person Needs, Moss talks about visiting or seeing the caller on the other side in person. As much as there is a need for us to connect via phone call or videocall, the need to have a physical connection, even a pat on the shoulder, is just as integral to our mental state. Moss’s chats vary in that physical need, of course, but vitally, that core need never appears to leave her.
Moss has these conversations, and you can feel how great a communicator she is; as the first-person states, she appears to be very attentive and aware of the needs of the person she is communicating with. It is a rare gift for someone to find what the other needs from an interaction without purely assuming. She does it here, again and again, so when we experience the later calls, you are sure as the people are on the video chat, that the love there is authentic, that Moss does care and everything that she says and emotions she shows on her face is as genuine as it can be.
Without that strength in the interaction, I doubt that the film would work as well as it does. Romvari lets her subject go and just carefully and intimately picks her shots throughout, neither being obtrusive nor distant. It’s What Each Person Needs are a film that strikes you in a way that you never anticipate, be it the intimate cinematography or by Moss’s personality, and you are drawn to it. If you find yourself lured by the work of Romvari as I have been after seeing this film, then head over to the Criterion Channel, which holds a large majority of her short films, you won’t regret it. (link provided below)
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