Program 16: The Ring Thing
Directed by William Sullivan
Sarah (Sarah Wharton), a documentary filmmaker, is going through her divorced parents’ things when she finds her mother’s old wedding ring.
On the beach in Provincetown, she pulls it out of her pocket to show her girlfriend, Kristen (Nicole Pursell), who mistakenly thinks Sarah is proposing. Whoops. So begins The Ring Thing, an interesting amalgamation of documentary interviews and the narrative story of Sarah and Kristen (you may remember both actresses from That’s Not Us, ImageOut 2015).
Same-sex marriage is legal now (at least for the time being), so stories of fighting to get married are becoming a bit less common. Sarah’s documentary project in the film features both heartbreakingly sad and humorous interviews about things we never discussed before because we never had to: the pros and cons of getting married, and what it’s like when a same-sex marriage ends.
As for the story of Sarah and Kristen, they are of two minds. Sarah fears marriage and wants to avoid it like the plague. Kristen is more than ready to tie the knot and has been for a long time. And here, The Ring Thing uniquely splits off in two directions: their life if they had married and their life if they hadn’t. Two simultaneous stories that have, surprisingly, some of the same bumps and obstacles. In the midst of both stories, Sarah works on her documentary, and while doing so, tries her best to examine what it is about marriage/divorce that frightens her so much. Meanwhile, Kristen fights her own internal battle over whether she wants to spend her life with somebody who doesn’t really want to be married.
It’s an inimitably told story, one rarely seen in the festival circuit. The Ring Thing has moments of fun, sadness, love, and joy, all shown from a fresh angle. Not only will it get us thinking, but it might even get us talking.
— Georgia Beers
AWARDS & ACCOLADES
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Outfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Reeling Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Inside Out Toronto LGBT Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Austin Gay & Lesbian International Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – Provincetown International Film Festival
- OFFICIAL SELECTION – CinemaQ Film Festival (Denver)