Billy & Molly: An Otter Love Story (2024)

Billy & Molly: An Otter Love Story Review

Billy & Molly: An Otter Love Story

Billy & Molly. An Otter Love Story is an important film because it reminds people that there is still good in the world. The famous National Geographic photographer Charlie Hamilton James tells a heartwarming story about how one man’s life was changed by seeing an otter struggling on land.

Billy is a simple man living in the Shetland Islands. He seems like many others who are happy with their lives but can’t shake the feeling that something is missing. When he finds an otter washed up on his jetty, he and his wife Susan nurse the cute creature back to health, naming her Molly. The little otter quickly takes over their lives. We see Susan calling a vet after hearing some worrying wheezing from Molly. Billy texts Susan while at work asking for updates. Billy even constructs a tiny replica of their house for Molly.

Throughout the course of the movie, Billy’s relationship with Molly grows, and he becomes a father figure to her even though he has never been one before. As for Molly, we can only guess she valued having her own “but and ben” where she could feel safe during changes in her life.

Susan acts as the main storyteller of the documentary besides Billy himself making some comments here or there throughout the film. This choice works well for Hamilton James’ movie. She explains what was going through Billy’s head during certain times when he might not have wanted to talk about it or known what to say himself or didn’t even realize what was happening inside him at all sometimes too. And though this film focuses primarily on Billy and Molly’s tale, Susan clearly starts to love Molly as well maybe because of what she saw happen inside her husband due to this otter.

The stunning visuals aren’t surprising considering Hamilton James’ Nat Geo background (and that this is a Nat Geo project), but they are certainly welcome nonetheless. The isolation of the Shetlands being so far north in the UK gives us beautiful shots of star-filled night skies and vibrant Northern Lights dances. But there are also some raw shots of stormy winter skies and seas that crash to bring us right into their world.

The images work on two levels they make a visually pleasing documentary, but they also hammer home just how alone people like Billy and Susan must feel living where they do. Far removed from the noise and rat race that is life in a metropolis, choosing to live in such an area follows choosing to remove oneself from the messes and stresses urban centers often bring. Through this unspoken decision’s imagery we start to see what Molly means to Billy and how much brighter every day has become for both Billy AND Susan since she has been around.

The film presents itself as one man’s documentary about a wild otter he finds and falls in love with, so its message isn’t exactly subtle or hidden. It does indeed deliver more obvious take aways about our relationship with nature throughout, but Hamilton James doesn’t hit us over the head with syrupy morals learned except maybe when Billy goes swimming hoping to see Molly’s world better at the very end of it all.

No, what the photographer-filmmaker does is show us a path of what can be done when we open ourselves up truly to one another with seeing eyes and full heart. In this way we can never fail.

Watch Billy & Molly: An Otter Love Story For Free On Gomovies.

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