Back Fork ★★★★

A dead daughter, a destroyed marriage, a drug addict sister… That’s enough to deal with for a lifetime, but there’s more to come as blue-collar worker Waylon is fighting demons in small town West Virginia. Darkness descends.

The corporate-sponsored opioid epidemic that has plagued America for years is dealt with in a truly realistic way in ”Back Fork”. This could be one of those films that might initiate real social change. A wake-up call. It brings emotional depth to the subject matter. No holding back.

Josh Stewart is both writing, directing and starring in this gut wrenching indie drama, and as much as it’s about grief, loss, love and addiction, it’s also about toxic masculinity - the kind that prevents men from talking about their feelings, even when it’s a matter of life and death. It’s so truthfully done.

I kept thinking of ”Requiem for a Dream”, which is another nightmarishly dark film about addiction, but ”Back Fork” hits closer to home. This man could be anyone, and that’s what makes this film hit so hard. True to life. Onward towards death. All set in beautiful West Virginia.