Wash Me by Rebecca Stewart is an intimate portrait of a woman rediscovering her own body and pleasure after going through breast cancer.
This film elegantly shines a spotlight on a topic vastly overlooked and not discussed enough; how cancer affects and changes sex, passion and intimacy.
Rebecca’s first-hand experience makes this story a bold exploration of the complexities of cancer and sexuality.
Short films have a unique power to encapsulate poignant stories within a limited time frame, leaving a lasting impact on their audience.
One such gem is Wash Me, a mesmerizing short film directed by Rebecca Stewart, which features the remarkable performances of Victoria Rose and Jonte.
In just a few minutes, Wash Me manages to evoke a spectrum of emotions and explore themes such as fear, pain, vulnerability, desire, intimacy, and hope, challenging societal norms and preconceptions.
Cancer, being a deeply personal and emotionally charged subject, is rarely depicted in conjunction with themes of sexuality and eroticism in mainstream cinema. Rebecca Stewart, however, exhibits immense artistic courage in taking on this challenging combination. With a sensitive approach, Wash Me fearlessly addresses aspects of human emotions and desires amidst life’s most challenging circumstances.
At its core, Wash Me is an intimate portrayal of the journey of two individuals, as they navigate the uncharted waters of cancer while also exploring their own sexuality and desires.
The film is an unflinchingly honest examination of how a life-altering illness can affect an individual’s self-perception and interpersonal relationships.
Victoria Rose delivers a captivating performance as a woman battling cancer, portraying her character’s emotional complexities with commendable sensitivity. Jonte, on the other hand, portrays a partner who stands by her side, navigating his own emotions and desires with authenticity and empathy.
Together, their chemistry draws the audience into their world, making us question our own notions of love, intimacy, and support.
The eroticism portrayed in the film goes hand in hand with the strong, conflicting emotions the couple are going through.
Victoria’s fragile self-esteem and fear are justified when we realize how chemotherapy and cancer affect and alter the body. Loss of libido, vaginal dryness, pain in penetration, nausea, vomiting, hair loss, fatigue, etc, are among the difficulties that she and many other women have faced.
The removal of one or more breasts also profoundly impacts psychologically, physically and emotionally a woman.
The need to accept any changes in your body and mind can be difficult and especially challenging for women and the high standards we are subjected to.
That is why this film is a much-needed depiction of this invisible journey of self-love, compassion and hope. A breath of fresh air that makes us understand such a complex and delicate human experience.
The chemistry and love they both have for one another, the partnership, the vulnerability and helplessness of the situation and the respect and understanding they both have, makes this film a must-see.
Make a story about cancer that does not focus and ends in death, sadness or hair loss.
Based on the director’s own story, this is the first erotic movie in history to raise awareness about sexuality, breast cancer, and the relationship between them.
Rebecca Stewart herself was diagnosed with only 28 years with breast cancer (now she is 31). She received chemotherapy for six months, had a lumpectomy and then underwent radiation therapy for a few weeks. After the intervention, she could not lift her arm or wet the bandages that covered her. Her partner bathed her and took care of her while she recovered and this is what inspired her to direct this film.
Rebecca hopes to continue making films that prompt conversation about unusual and often stigmatized topics. Make sure you follow her work as we will see many more projects from such a talented professional.