kate winslet i am ruth

‘Kate Winslet is world class’: People are shocked at Channel 4’s ‘heartbreaking’ I Am Ruth

Kate’s real-life daughter puts on a stunning show as well

I Am Ruth, a feature-length episode from Dominic Savage’s I Am… series is being praised for its “heartbreaking” plotline. Kate Winslet plays an exasperated mum trying to navigate the thorny world of young teenagers and social media pressure – all while her daughter sinks deeper and deeper into depression. Kate’s real-life child, Mia Threapleton, plays Ruth’s sixth form-age daughter.

Without giving too much away (because, seriously, you NEED to see it for yourselves), Ruth is forced to come to terms with the fact that her daughter has fallen victim to horrific content on Instagram. It’s a slow-burning, panic-inducing, stomach-churning watch, and it’s no wonder people have had such intense reactions to it.

With this in mind, here’s what everyone is saying about Channel 4’s I Am Ruth:

People are praising Kate Winslet for her ‘powerful’ performance

Kate perfectly balances the very-mum emotions of: “I need to do something about this” and “fuck it, I tried”. My heart broke into pieces when Ruth offered Freya a bowl of soup, and she just looked at it in silence before storming off. Also – which teenage girl hasn’t absolutely seen red whenever their parent comments on their clothes. Mortifying.

Watching Ruth’s heart breaking in real-time as Freya gets more-and-more ill is just awful to watch – but you can’t look away. It’s a testament to how truly amazing Kate Winslet actually is.

Mia Threapleton is the breakout star of the show

The way Mia subtly and quietly acted out Freya’s gradual decline was terrifying to watch. Her first scene, in which she’s desperately pulling on different outfits, pouring makeup on and pulling at her hair, actually gave me a tension headache. It brought me right back to being 17 and hating myself for not looking like Kylie Jenner.

Everything about Mia’s performance was just so horrifically relatable. It couldn’t be more clear how much she’ll be following in her mum’s footsteps over the next few years.

It was an amazing portrayal of mental illness in teens

Not to sound 50 years old, but it’s so obvious to me how much pressure from social media affects our lives. From how we look to how we spend our time; the burden of being the best at everything has never been bigger. Teenagers are still developing in so many ways – it’s toxic to lay that on them as well.

I Am Ruth expertly showed the real effect social media can have on kids nowadays. It’s a totally unflinching, visceral warning to parents everywhere. One of the only popular critiques of the film was that it didn’t show just how long the waiting list for CAMHS (the Children and Adolescent Mental Health Service) really is. With the average waiting time for an initial assessment being around 12 weeks – many people have said this isn’t actually the case, and the service “isn’t fit for purpose”.

I Am Ruth is available to stream on All4 now. 

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Featured image via Channel 4.