Love The One You’re With is a film written & executive produced by Sampson McCormick with Spencer M. Collins IV as director. It explores the relationship dynamic between a black gay couple, Avery and Miles, living in Los Angeles, California. The bliss and excitement are alive and vibrant during the beginning stages of their relationships, much like viewers would expect. I must admit it made me smile to see the romance unfold. Love can indeed be powerful, but is it enough to save a relationship, or is the power of love limited?
The Ghostly End
As quickly as sparks fly between two individuals, they can easily be extinguished. Miles experiences this when he is ghosted by Jazz (Danny Royce) after suggesting they consider a serious relationship. Jazz quickly switches the subject, but Miles assures him that they will talk about it later. They never even meet for the scheduled dinner date or anytime shortly.
Ghosting is when someone cuts ties with another without notice or much reason. You likely will think there is no issue at all. Many individuals have experienced this firsthand, I included. In most situations, you don’t run into your ex, though. It is important to remember that it is not a reflection of you or the value you hold if you happen to find yourself being ghosted.
Unfortunately, there are still people in this world who are fearful of being truly vulnerable to others. They cannot communicate their desires and expectations directly. Ghosting is merely the easy way out. There’s no accountability because the intent is to never see the person again. As we all know, life doesn’t go as planned.
The World Is So Small
A lot unfolds during the ending sequences of the film. Viewers can witness the showdown between Avery and Miles, which involves both parties apologizing to one another. As a passionate kiss is shared, a small glimmer of hope sparkles and almost fades as quickly as the arrival of Miles’s epiphany. Not wanting to become captured in the gravitational force of Avery’s love, Miles retracts his heart and realises the love that once existed no longer does.
After trying to retreat, Miles realizes he left his phone and returns to obtain it. As he retrieves it and leaves to exit again, the ghost of his past finally resurfaces after five months. Jazz offers no apologies and no explanations. He even cranks up the fuck-boy behaviour by telling Miles he meant nothing to him. As Jazz rests his arm around Avery’s shoulder, revealing they are now together, Miles slaps Avery and reveals his secret to his mother, Ms Barbara.
While I can sympathize with wanting to slap someone for such disrespect, I also have to hold Miles accountable. His passive-aggressive behaviour backfired on him. He thought Avery would notice and be the one to always fix it, but he got tired of fighting. Miles thought the grass was greener on the other side and that he could easily replace Avery, someone he was with for six years. Little did he know, the replacement replaced him and got with his ex.
The gay world is a very small place, particularly in certain cities like Los Angeles, California. With this knowledge, I never understood why people have such shady behaviour. Jazz could have easily communicated; he didn’t want a relationship with Miles. Still, instead, he ghosted him and played all in Miles’s face. You know what they say about karma, though.
What Goes Around, Comes Around
A lot of the situations in the film I found could have likely been avoidable with simple communication. Getting to know someone on an intimate level requires continuous effort. It’s a constant discovery. The bliss doesn’t last on its own once you get it. Both individuals have to be committed to putting in the work and be willing to bring up issues that may be uncomfortable to discuss. If you aren’t happy in your relationship and have been with someone for six or more years, I think you owe it to them to have a conversation before creeping out on them.
Things don’t always go as planned while dating or in a relationship. It’s how you handle the situation that matters. Having a disregard for other people’s feelings just because you’re upset with them doesn’t help the matters at hand. If you want a good partner, you have to be one. That includes when the times get rough. The way you treat someone is very well the same way someone could treat you. Suppose you treat them carelessly, cheat on them, disregard their emotions or concerns. In that case, you can’t truly be mad if you experience the same things. The universe has an interesting way of humbling us and as we know, what goes around, comes around.
The Power Of Love
Love The One You’re With is a great short film that I found refreshingly showcases the power, dynamics, and spectrum of love. I honestly wish it was longer. It’s nice to view a cast featuring predominantly black gay men that don’t fit typical physical homosexual stereotypes and relationships that don’t fit heterosexual norms. I also enjoyed how the film did not centre around HIV/AIDS. While the topic is briefly mentioned, Rene does a lovely job focusing on an individual’s humanity.
Despite being gay, straight, HIV positive, undetectable, and so on, people are still people and deserve to be treated as such. Rene states parents should be proud of their children when they are, in fact, good people. Parents should also be proud of themselves.
To see the story unfold for yourself, Love The One You’re With is available on Amazon Prime Movie.