This film is an effort to examine how, little by little, one can go from being conscientious and considerate to being careless and ambivalent. How, over time, slips in one's moral compass can lead to lapses in judgment; perhaps even lead to evil. The story juxtaposes the material desires of a sad young woman with the physical needs of her wealthy elderly aunt. So, really, this is just the age-old social security debate, which is as relevant in today’s political climate as it was back in 1980, during the Reagan-Carter election—the period when this story takes place.
As I have done previously, I intentionally mixed genres in this film. On the one hand, I wanted to capture the foreboding tone and quiet atmosphere of classic gothic horror films, e.g., BURNT OFFERINGS, LET'S SCARE JESSICA TO DEATH, BLACK SABBATH (THE DROP OF WATER). On the other, I also wanted it to be a romantic, female-driven psychological thriller, e.g., 3 WOMEN, PERSONA, MY SUMMER OF LOVE. Consequently, SWEET, SWEET LONELY GIRL is more of a gothic romance than anything else, and a deliberate tribute to those films.
My hope is that you’ll find an amalgam of my cinematic influences while giving a little thought to the dangerous way in which small moral compromises can lead down a slippery slope to larger ethical lapses.
—A.D. Calvo, writer-director