Watch at Home 02.10.2023


Directed by Marley Morrison
Film Movement
103 Minutes
United Kingdom
Comedy, Drama, Romance, LGBTQIA2S+, Coming of Age
Not Rated

Socially awkward lesbian teenager AJ begrudgingly joins her family on a seaside vacation. She finds herself constantly at odds with her painfully "normal" mother and older sister, neither of whom can understand why she doesn't smile more or "dress like a girl." Her anticipated "week of hell" takes an unexpected turn when Isla, a free-spirited and sun-loving lifeguard, catches her eye. Full to the brim with teen angst and romantic fumbling, Sweetheart wryly captures the bittersweet pangs of adolescent yearning, self-realization and personal connections, all against the hilarious ups and downs of the quintessential British family holiday. Praised as an "authentic account of the murky, counterintuitive waters of the queer adolescent experience" (Little White Lies), Marley Morrison’s feature debut is a surprisingly ebullient coming-of-age charmer not to be missed.

Director & Cast

  • Director: Marley Morrison
  • Starring: Nell Barlow
  • Starring: Ella-Rae Smith
  • Starring: Jo Hartley
  • Starring: Sophia Di Martino
  • Starring: Samuel Anderson




  • "[A] nuanced performance by Barlow... making an impressive feature debut... in this universal, warm-hearted story "
    Amber Wilkinson, Screen Daily
  • "Quick-witted and understated, Sweetheart is a feel-good story that leaves everyone on a high."
    Hattie Collins, Vogue
  • "The endearing British indie “Sweetheart” announces the emergence of a major talent both in front of and behind the camera. For her debut feature, writer/director Marley Morrison has crafted a splendid showcase for her leading lady, Nell Barlow, who is a revelation in her first major screen role."
    Matt Fagerholm,
  • "Marley Morrison's feature debut Sweetheart is a sure-fire crowd pleaser that showcases a young filmmaker and cast with real promise."
    Matthew Anderson, CineVue
  • "The combination of Barlow's terrific central performance and a screenplay packed with wit and sensitivity makes this an incredibly charming coming-of-age comedy."
    Katherine McLaughlin,
  • "A warm-hearted and tender exploration of young sexuality and the bonds which draw families together (but also pull them apart)."
    Rob Aldam, Backseat Mafia
  • "This is the best British film you'll see this year."
    Ben Turner, The Pink Lens
  • "This is a breathtaking feature debut, and one of the most astute movies about adolescence in recent memory."
    Rich Cline, Shadows on the Wall
  • "Sweetheart is a hugely charming and fresh take on the well-trodden narrative, featuring a fantastically witty lead performance from Nell Barlow."
    Nicola Austin, We Have a Hulk
  • "Sweetheart has a lot of heart, and writer-director Morrison proves to be a vibrant new indie voice with a confident and established style that manages to make this familiar story feel fresh and new."
    Sara Clements, Exclaim!
  • "Sweetheart marks an authentic account of the murky, counterintuitive waters of the queer experience and eros in adolescence...."
    Marina Ashioti, Little White Lies
  • "One of the year’s best feature debuts."
    Donald Clarke, Irish Times
  • "The writer and director Marley Morrison... cannily observes details that feel specific to young people... to the film’s credit, the central relationship remains realistically drawn — a teenage courtship that’s marked by misunderstandings and mood swings. The characters aren’t always sweet, but they never feel phony."
    Teo Bugbee, The New York Times
  • "It’s an absolute charmer, an engaging, relatable LGBTQ-themed film with eccentric and likable characters."
    Randy Myers, Boston Herald