The Film



    A true story of love and addiction, in two countries.

    Gundega, a Latvian former prison officer, is on the run from a drugs possession charge. Surviving on benefits paydays in a makeshift camp in the woods in Harlow, UK, she befriends Melanie, a local heroin user mourning the death of her Latvian boyfriend.

    Their friendship provides each of them with something they crave: for Gundega, it is someone to care for. For Melanie, it is a genuine friend among all the 'scumbags'. But trouble is never far away.

    Drowning in a co-dependent, vicious downward spiral, they make a pact to travel to Latvia. But can it really offer them a dream escape from their punch-drunk, giro-junkie street life, or will Mel's old habits and Gundega's past finally catch up with them?

    Christopher Michael Tew's exceptionally intimate debut feature documentary is a compelling, shocking, and deeply moving portrait of an unlikely friendship, played out against the a backdrop of a chaotic immigrant community in Britain. Filmed over a year and journeying between a tent in Harlow to the snows of Riga, it goes beyond the 'Benefits Britain' narrative to portray two very different human spirits brought together in crisis.