Frontline review

To mark the anniversary of the first lockdown, the BBC has released three documentaries by award-winning filmmaker Jay Martin, and Frontline is one of them. 

Frontline review

‘Why is it that Covid is so different?’ is the opening question in Frontline, and the main subject of the film too. 

Aimed at the general public, this documentary allows us to see the emotional struggle behind the people covering long shifts in hospitals, taking care of every patient, doing everything possible to save them – and watching those who could not defeat coronavirus die. Such is the everyday life for every hospital staff since the pandemic began and it’s perfectly portrayed in Frontline, where Kayleigh Lawrence (deputy ward leader) and Dr. Pulak Kumar Paul (critical care consultant), from King’s Mill Hospital (Sutton-in-Ashfield, Nottinghamshire) tell us about the moments they find most difficult and challenging.

Frontline is a Covid-19 prevention documentary, or at the very least feels geared towards re-emphasising the importance of staying safe – particularly pertinent as lockdown measures begin to ease. But it’s not the average informative documentary. By showing how the hospital staff feels about the pandemic, it adds a humanising layer to the pandemic; it’s telling us to stay safe for these people’s sake. I think the message – or one of them – is probably “let’s care for the people who take care of us”, and I think this is something incredibly important to keep in mind. 

On a more technical aspect, Jack Bennet’s score captures the emotional essence of the documentary, creating a sensitive atmosphere that perfectly fits what’s happening on screen. The mix of music and background hospital noise adds to the bigger picture. The camera angles are a very important part of the film as well, adding drama and gravitas as both Kayleigh and Dr. Paul reflect on the past year. Together, all these elements create an engaging film to watch, that is able to convey its main message and fulfill its purpose.

The key aspect that makes Frontline so emotive is that it’s focused on the human side of the pandemic and the health system, and it’s that humanity that makes it a documentary everyone should pay attention to – not only in England but everywhere. The reality is that care workers facing the Covid pandemic are in the same situation, no matter where they are. I’d like to seize this opportunity to thank all health system workers everywhere for everything you’re doing for us; and to everyone else, I’d recommend watching ‘Frontline’ to finally understand that the Covid-19 impact is more than the disease itself. It has emotional consequences too, and it takes everyone’s responsibility to put an end to it. 

You can watch all three films here:

Header Image Credit: Jay Martin and BBC


Candelaria Gómez

Candelaria Gómez Contributor

Hey! I'm a violinist and music student based in Argentina. I love art in all its expressions -and I love to write about it.
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