Jessie Buckey as Moll and Jonney Flynn as Pascal
I took myself off to theatr Clwyd last night and thankfully there were an actual film showing.
So I went to see the Film Beast -a debut slow burn thriller by British filmmaker Michael Pearce.
Set in a rather foreboding and moody Jersey we find twenty something Moll (Jessie Buckley) still living a claustrophobic life at home with her parents. Moll is the part time carer to her father who is suffering from Alzheimer's and is very much under the thumb of her mother (Geraldine James) who favours Moll's siblings in a controlled passive-aggressive kind of way.
After a disastrous birthday party Moll bumps into Pascal ( Jonney Flynn) a scruffy , uncouth poacher and petty criminal who strangely seems to understand the sadness within her and the two embark on a relationship against the backdrop of fear and mistrust as the wider community copes with recent disappearance of murder of several Island teenage girls.
Pearce has crafted a complicated and rather clever narrative here. Very slowly we find out that Moll is not quite what she seems. Instead of just finding peace and a happiness from her icy family home within her new, rather sweet relationship, Moll's past (a moment of teenage violence) is uncovered and revisited and the story then descends into a much darker piece indeed.
As Pascal becomes one of the suspects in the local murders the couple's pasts come to haunt them both and what started as a haunting love story evolves into who is the real baddie here? kind of thriller.
Buckley carries the film quite magnificently. With her delicate looks, and doe eyed expression that can morph from Victim to " villain" in a heartbeat , she captures perfectly, the ambiguous backstory within Moll and she dominates the film in a powerhouse performance.
It's a dark, moody piece, beautifully shot in an oppressive Jersey most would not recognise .