filmsandmore

Thursday, August 17, 2017

The Party

The opening credits roll to the slowest and most laid back rendition of Jerusalem I've heard, played on an electric guitar. We are ushered into the preparations for a small cocktail party to celebrate Janet's promotion to health minister in a fictional British Labour Government. While Janet (Kristin Scott Thomas) is joyfully juggling canapés and her cellphone in the kitchen, her unshaven husband Bill (Timothy Spall) is morosely drinking red wine in the lounge and changing LPs on the record player. Gradually the other guests (two and half other mismatched couples) arrive: her cynical best friend and some time adviser, April (Patricia Clarkson) and partner Gottfried (a German new-age life coach), another friend Martha (followed later by her younger partner Jinny) and young banker Tom (who is +1 to his delayed wife).

Filmed in black and white, The Party is a film from the dinner-party-from-hell genre. Where verbal jousting forms the bulk of the action. It's main departure from the genre is the lack of dinning room. The action taking place in the kitchen, lounge, bathroom and tiny garden of a London terrace house.

Beneath an all too easily shredded veneer of friendship, respectability, fidelity and good manners, lies contempt, insecurity, hypocrisy etc. The celebration of Janet's promotion descends rapidly into back biting and farce. The political and religious beliefs of the hosts and their guests seem barely skin deep.

The four female characters are all reasonably believable as four women who live in and around politics. Less believable are the three male characters, especially Bill who we are told is an atheist and an academic who has been offered a professorship at Yale but who comes across like someone with no beliefs, no life experience and an incomplete high school education. Tom, who arrives having just found out that his wife has been having an affair, is highly agitated but not angry at either her or her lover. Gottfried is a man without self awareness and whose education and outlook on life seems to have been gained from the lunatic fringe of Facebook, is not entirely unbelievable but it is unbelievable that he and Alice could have ever met let alone formed a relationship.

It is easy to see The Party as lampooning the post-Blair, pre-Corbyn Labour Party and others in the left leaning upper middle class around the world. But the political overtones are fairly light and it is essentially a film where four women get to be bitchy, in a classy way, about each other (and sometimes their menfolk) over a glass of champagne. At 71 minutes it doesn't outstay its welcome.

Ian's rating 2.5/5

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Human Traces

I was a bit concerned about Human Traces being a throwback to the twentieth century's long tradition of dark and depressing New Zealand films. A thriller filmed on a sub-antarctic island didn't really hold much promise for breaking out of that mold,  and the first section of the film didn't seem to either. On the other hand the acting talent was good - Sophie Henderson did an amazing job in Fantail and Mark Mitchinson was a practised and convincing bad guy in both Nothing Trivial and Bloodlines.

The story centres around husband and wife Sarah (Sophie Henderson) and Glenn (Mark Mitchinson) who are two-thirds of a team of three monitoring the eco-system of an un-named island south of New Zealand.  Sarah is young and blonde and pretty, and Glenn is a somewhat morose character who is at least twenty-fives years her senior. They met when he was one of Sarah's lecturers at university.The film begins as the other team member leaves and her replacement (Pete) arrives. Pete is also young and beautiful and doesn't have much of a science background

The narrative is told three times, each time from a different member of the team's perspective. Salient events are the realisation that their attempts at pest control are failing and Glenn not wanting to relay this information back to New Zealand and the failure of the radio and its transmission mast (preventing further communication with New Zealand).

When the radio fails and Glenn refuses to fix it, I thought we were into a hostage situation like the one in the Berlin Syndrome. But as we moved into hearing and seeing the story from Pete and Sarah's perspective we found it's not a straightforward as that and the power doesn't rest solely with Glenn. Human Traces is a nuanced and interesting story about three flawed human beings in an isolated and scenic environment. The acting is excellent, particularly from newbie Vinnie Bennett, and the location contributes to the tension in the film.

Anne's rating 3.5/5 Ian's Rating 3/5

It Comes at Night

Travis and his gun-toting, trigger happy, paranoid parents live in a large boarded up house deep in the forest. He doesn't sleep well due to nightmares about his grandfather dying of the plague that, we assume, has destroyed civilization. His only other company / diversion is his dog. But the family isn't short of anything and no-one has to go to work or school, they are in a cosy catastrophe situation.

The title, It Comes at Night, refers both to Travis's nightmares and the genesis of most of the disruptions to the family's life in self-imposed seclusion. This film is not about the catastrophe that has destroyed civilization, but about Travis's family and its interactions with the world outside the house. Those interactions oscillate between middle-class politeness and murderous violent paranoia, with no nuances in between. The main problem they face is how to decide who to trust when you have very little information and no way of corroborating what people tell you.

While Travis is our way into this film, his father, Paul, is the character who dominates the screen, his family and anyone trying to get close. In fact, the male characters dominate this film in a way that you can almost smell the testosterone wafting towards you from the screen.

While some of the activity in the film seems borderline supernatural (especially to Travis), apart from Travis's nightmares this is a rational horror film, rooted in the horrors of real-world cause and effect. Dealing with the unknown outside their little hideaway provides the thrills in the film.

If one were attempting to philosophize about the film, it would be tempting to draw parallels between the attitudes of this fictional family in the forest and the attitudes of Americans toward each other (and towards the outside world). Where to draw the lines between us and them and how to deal with them.

While the script marginalises its female characters, it is film about around its male characters and their spoken and non-spoken interactions. Joel Edgerton (Paul) dominates when ever he is on-screen.

Ian's rating 3/5

Award Ceremony NZ International Film Festival 2017

My personal summary of NZIFF 2017. I had few disappointments this year, either the films this year were good or I was good picking the ones I would like.

Themes

Each year has its themes.  This year's themes are:
  • Thrillers, which got their own section in the program this year.
  • Woman Centred films, a lot of them this year.
  • Sex.
There were even 2 films involving poisonous mushrooms.

Best Film

Nominations:
My pick is Jasper Jones an Australian film about young Charlie Bucktin growing up fast.

Best Documentary

Nominations:
  • Abacus: Small Enough to Jail - the fallout of the global financial crisis
    • Dina - a love story with physical affection issues
    • Kedi - a cute doco about stray cats in Istanbul. Did NZIFF comp Gareth Morgan?
    • Risk - a little insight into Julian Assange
    My pick is Abacus: Small Enough to Jail a legal battle and family film

    Best Thriller

    Nominations:
    • 6 Days - docu-drama about the Iranian Embassy hostage crisis 1980
    • Bad Genius - a teen thriller without any life threatening situations
    • Berlin Syndrome - not sponsored by the Berlin Tourist Board or Lonely Planet
    • Hostages - docu-drama about 1983 hijack of Aeroflot flight 6833
    • Human Traces - Kiwi Sub-Antarctic thriller caused by none communication
    • It Comes at Night - post apocalyptic threats in the night 
    • Jasper Jones - teen thriller in small town Australia
    • The Nile Hilton Incident - noir thriller in Cairo
    • Tragedy Girls - girl power, social media and a small town killing spree
    • Wind River - you are not in call-for-backup country now, FBI girl
    My pick is Wind River, while I enjoyed some of the other thrillers more. I think this one works best as the thriller.

    Best Comedy

    Nominations:
    My pick is Tragedy Girls, though A Date for Mad Mary is a very close second.

    Best Horror

    Nominations:
    My pick is The Evil Within even though it is the most conventional of horror movies

    Best Woman Centred Film

    Nominations:
    My pick is A Date for Mad Mary, the stroppiest of women on the hunt for a man

    Special mentions for the great frocks:
    • The Beguiled - long skirts and tight bodices to be ripped, showering buttons 
    • Belle de Jour - Yves Saint Laurent elegance, even for prostitutes 
    • Lady Macbeth - tightest of corsets and the widest of skirts 
    • The Love Witch - dressed up, dishabille or naked but always sexy

    Best Sex Film

    Nominations:
    My pick is Kiki, Love to Love credits to credits sex in more variety than you'd admit to knowing.

    Strangest Film

    Nominations:
    • The Evil Within - what is behind the sunglasses?
    • The Love Witch - love, magic, sex, Victoria high tea, a renaissance fair and dead bodies
    • The Untamed - an alien in a movie that is not centre of attention
    My pick is The Untamed a Mexican modern relationship drama with an alien in the supporting cast

    Special Mentions

    I saw one Kiwi feature film (Human Traces) and 6 Kiwi short films (New Zealand's Best 2017).

    A Gentle Creature was long of the longest films and it could have been shortened by more than 2 hours and still got its message across.

    And remember, be careful of who cooked those mushrooms.

    Sunday, August 13, 2017

    The Other Side of Hope

    The war in Syria and the Syrian refugee crisis have been such a big thing for Europe in recent years that it's not really a surprise that it's the inspiration for a film. It's a little surprising that it's set in Finland, but I guess that just illustrates the point that nowhere in Europe was or is unaffected.

    The Other Side of Hope has two main characters and initially they're part of separate narratives. Eventually their paths cross, though that took rather longer than it should have - long enough for me to wonder if was ever going to happen.

    Character A is Khaled, a Syrian mechanic who arrives on a coal ship, having stowed away from Poland. He goes through official channels and applies for asylum, and is housed temporarily in a refugee centre. When his application for asylum is declined, he absconds.

    Character B is Wikstrom, a travelling clothing salesman who gets disenchanted with his lot, sells his stock, uses the proceeds to win big in a local poker syndicate and buys a small restaurant with the proceeds.

    Khaled and Wikstrom meet up when Wikstrom discovers Khaled sleeping rough beside the restaurant's dumpster, and employs him to solve the problem of what to do about him.



    So as an examination of the treatment of refugees and an examination of the oddities of the Finnish character, the Other Side of Hope is a perfectly pleasant watch but not a must-see. There are some funny bits but mostly it's droll and deadpan rather than funny. There is visually humourous content - for example the policeman  typing Khaled's application for asylum on a typewriter - as if it's 1965 not 2015. And the staff at the restaurant wouldn't be out of place at Wes Craven's The Grand Budapest Hotel. The trailer promises "torrents of laughter" and that it's "screamingly funny" and I don't agree, so I was disappointed. I'm not inspired to go to Finland either.

    Anne's rating 2.5/5

    Saturday, August 12, 2017

    The Berlin Syndrome

    Clare the Australian backpacker meets Andy the German school teacher out and about in Berlin. They hit it off, and meet up again the next day. He invites her back to his apartment, they have sex, she spends the night and when she wakes up in the morning  he's gone to work, and she's locked in. Not too perturbed, she waits for him to come home  and when he does, he takes the key he meant to leave her out of his pocket. They have more sex, she stays another night and when she wakes up she finds the key he left her doesn't fit the lock.

    So now we're straying into nightmare territory. The windows don't open, and they're double glazed and reinforced. Andy appears to be the only occupant of an entire apartment complex. The apartment windows don't look out over the street, they look onto a courtyard. Andy has removed the sim card from Clare's phone, and there's no landline. When Andy returns he admits to detaining Clare on purpose, and we're definitely in nightmare territory.

    The film moves into exploring the bad situation (augmenting the nightmare) and looking for the opportunity to escape. It's very tense and keeps us wondering what the outcome will be, particularly when we find out that Andy has pulled this stunt before. The Berlin Syndrome is not for the faint-hearted but I promise you won't be bored. It's well-acted and atmospheric. Just don't expect to drop off to sleep immediately when you get home.

    Anne's rating 3.5/5 Ian's rating 3.5/5

    Dina

    Dina is a love story. It features Dina and Scott, who both have Autism Spectrum disorder and are engaged to be married. They met at a support group for "neurologically diverse adults". They have a loving and supportive relationship but Scott has issues with physical affection. Dina is keen for their marriage to involve sex and the film is documents the period leading up to their wedding in which she attempts to make that likely.


    Refreshingly (and perhaps slightly surprising for people with a condition that can inhibit communication) is how articulate Scott and Dina are. They describe their disabilities fluently and acknowledge the problem they're trying to solve.

    Also refreshing is that the America that Dina and Scott inhabit isn't the one we see on most American TV programmes. They don't live in large house with a lawn and they don't drive an SUV. Dina lives in an upper storey apartment in a building on the corner of busy intersection. She and Scott travel on public transport .  Dina is on a disability benefit and Scott works at Walmart and lives with his parents in a home that wouldn't be out of place on a TV programme about hoarding. Their wedding takes place in a diner which is still open for other business.

    You can't help but compare Dina to the Big Bang Theory, which has Amy and Sheldon's relationship as one of its main plot lines. They both have PhDs and work at Caltech, and Sheldon has major issues with physical intimacy. Amy wants a full-on sexual relationship, and both she and Sheldon are very articulate.

    Watching the Big Bang Theory is probably more entertaining but watching Dina is (inevitably) more realistic.  The film shows the humour in Dina and Scott's situation without being patronising, or providing a fairy-tale ending.

    Anne's rating 2.5/5

    A Date for Mad Mary

    Mary is getting out of jail just in time to be maid of honour at her best friend's wedding. Mary has a take-no-nonsense, never-back-down, have-a-good-time attitude to life and she really misses her best friend Charlene. But while Charlene has organised a fast food job for Mary, she is super busy organising her wedding and has no time to go drinking with her buddy. Everyone also assumes that because Mary has been in jail and has never had time for boyfriends, that she won't be bringing a +1. Mary is of course outraged that people including her best friend assume she won't have a +1 in time for the wedding.

    A Date for Mad Mary is an Irish romcom set on the wrong side of the bus shelter. Mary (known from a safe distance as Mad Mary) lives with her mother and grandmother. The latter giving us a clue to the origin of Mary's personality by dropping the line "even a sniper wouldn't take you out" into casual conversation.

    The film is punctuated by Mary writing and rehearsing her maid of honour speech about Charlene which provides the only clues to what their relationship was like before Mary went to jail. Which is necessary as there are no signs of the inseparable good-time-girls now, with most communication done by text message and voice mail.

    If A Date for Mad Mary was only about the ever more desperate attempts to find a man to go to the wedding with her and pretend to be her boyfriend, or her attempts to get past the bouncers at her favourite night club it would be funny but there wouldn't be any character development. Though Mary is happiest dancing to loud music while drunk she has also been tasked with wrangling the somewhat unreliable wedding photographer, who unwittingly sets Mary on a path of self discovery.

    Ian's rating 4/5 Anne's rating 4/5

    Friday, August 11, 2017

    Bad Genius

    Thrillers normally involve threats to life. But the Thai thriller Bad Genius involves issues that are much more relevant to young people. Pressure to succeed, in this case succeed at exams and other pressures from the education system, parents and other students.

    Lynn has no trouble with exams but her best friend Grace is not so bright. Not succeeding with tutoring her friend, in a tragedy of miscalculation Lynn resorts to passing answers during an exam. But Grace blabs to her boyfriend Pat and now Lynn has more people wanting her help with exams. As these are students from well heeled backgrounds this proves temptingly lucrative.

    As the scam repeats and grows it becomes more complicated and involves an international dimension. Every bit as tense as a more conventional thriller this teen centred film involves threats, cash, blackmail, chases, betrayal and stars four kids whose personalities would be familiar from school.

    The wheeling and dealing between the students, the pressure to succeed and the tense atmosphere in the exam room are what drives this film. While it invites us to root for Lynn and her friends to succeed, the film doesn't overlook its duty to deliver a morally correct outcome. 🎥

    Ian's rating 4.5/5 Anne's rating 5/5

    Wednesday, August 09, 2017

    The Untamed

    I don't understand why The Untamed isn't Ant Timpson's Incredibly Strange section of the NZIFF, because there is no doubt that this is a very strange Mexican film. Most of the film is a family sexual drama between bi-sexual Angel, his wife Alejandra (and 2 little boys) and Fabián his homosexual brother-in-law. Angel is in denial about his sexuality and acts as a crass homophobe in public. Circling the family and precipitating the crisis is free spirit and outsider, Veronica. Veronica is obsessed by an alien creature that we don't get to see for most of the film and that not directly related to most of the action.

    Veronica is treated in hospital by Fabián for a "dog" bite to her abdomen and she later entices him to experience something amazing in the woods (that she refuses to describe). The alien lives in a darkened room in an off the grid house in the woods owned by a middle aged scientist and his wife. (We all know to be wary of the cabin in the woods, don't we?). They don't mind people visiting the alien and are happy to provide refreshments and advice.

    It turns out that while visiting the alien is an amazing experience for some people it can be less so for others. The consequences tear Angel and Alejandra's family apart, but Veronica's role in the matter remains secret. Undeterred (or perhaps obsessed) Veronica takes Alejandra to visit the house in the woods too.

    While it is not mentioned in the film it seems that the alien has a sexual preference but even if it likes you it can be risky to visit, hence the title.

    Despite the labels, there is very little science fiction in the film and even less horror. It is mostly a realistic drama about adult relationships with a slightly horrifying, yet enticing alien hiding in a dark corner of a house in the woods and a fair bit of sex. Pleasure and violence are the main themes of the film, especially how sexual pleasure motivates people's actions.

    Ian's rating 3/5

    Kedi


    Sometimes you just need a bit of fluff. That's especially true when you've seen a lot of  shootings, abductions and general unkindness. So what better fluff is there than a cat movie? And not just any cat movie, an exotic cat movie, filmed in beautiful Istanbul.
    Kedi is a documentary which follows a bunch of cats and meets their owners and minders. None of the cats are completely domesticated  - they live in workshops, at the fish market, on the wharf and in a dress shop. Some the humans mind just one cat (and its offspring) in their workplace and some feed and care for whole communities of feral cats.

    My favourite cat was Sari the first cat, a particularly charming ginger cat who we follow through the streets where she scavenges food for her four very cute ginger kitten. She walks ( jogs, really) long distances and her hunting ability is impressive. My favourite cat minder was the man who had a running tab at the vets for treating sick and injured cats.

    It seems that Istanbul has had a significant semi-feral cat population for hundred of years but that modern development may put that in peril. It's much harder for cats to live in and around large modern buildings and big road than it is for them to to live in small old buildings and alleyways. So it could be, that in watching this movie you're watching a disappearing phenomenon. And speaking of disappearing phenomena, you may find your angst evaporating as well.

    Anne's rating 3/5 Ian's rating 3.5/5

    The Evil Within

    Do you wonder where the ideas behind some of your dreams come from? Did you ever have a dream or nightmare so weird that it must have come from someone (or something) else's mind?

    Apparently, Andrew Getty thought so when he was a child. Written and directed by billionaire Andrew Getty, The Evil Within is the story of a nightmare plagued young man who actions are increasing directed by a demon who manifests itself in his dreams and later in his reflection in a mirror.

    Dennis suffers from brain damage and lives with his irrepressibly cheerful older brother John. Most of the story is told from Dennis's point of view and while his dream sequences are weird, they take a back seat to his reflection in a mirror that John gives him. His reflection begins to talk to him, urging him and blackmailing him into increasingly psychopathic behaviour.

    This isn't a jump horror movie, nor is it a splatter movie (despite the death toll it is surprisingly bloodless), it is mostly a creepy psychological horror with plenty of special effects. The dim house, dark dream scenes, and darker basement all contrast with John's relentless cheerfulness, the bright sunshine outside and Susan the bikini clad worker at Dennis's favourite ice cream parlour.

    The Evil Within throws us into the weirdness from the beginning, using up many of its best ideas in the first few minutes. This means that like a lot of horror films it gets a bit repetitive before the finale. For light relief, there is a sprinkling humour throughout the film especially from the female supporting characters and a brief encounter with a laid back Cosmo Kramer inspired character.

    Ian's rating 2.5/5

    Tuesday, August 08, 2017

    The Beguiled

    The Beguiled is a remake of a 1971 film 🎥 starring Clint Eastwood, and based on a 1966 Southern Gothic novel. The synopsis is that during the American Civil War a wounded Union soldier ends up in an almost closed girl's boarding school behind enemy lines. The title could have been Seven Southern Belles Capture a Soldier or perhaps more coyly Our Toy Soldier. I haven't seen the 1971 version of the film but director Sofia Coppola says she was creating a version of the story from the women's point of view (which I gather was also the case with the novel).

    Nicole Kidman is Martha Farnsworth the head mistress of The Farnsworth Seminary for Young Ladies which she runs in her family estate. While most of the girls have gone home to escape the nearby fighting, there are 5 left of varying ages from 12 up plus another teacher Edwina Dabney (Kirsten Dunst). Colin Farrell is John McBurney the Irish born Yankee corporal with a handful of shrapnel in his left leg found in the nearby woods by one of the younger girls. Miss Farnsworth decides to hand him over to the next Confederate soldiers who pass the front gate, but not before she treats his wound.

    The conflict between duty to their own side in the war, mercy for a wounded person and sexual desire drive the women and girls to varying degrees. These conflicts, the existing school hierarchy, politeness and good manners of Southern women, a big old candle lit house, and long dresses mean the film teeters on the border between bodice ripper and sexual farce without coming down on either side.

    Corporal McBurney is of course initially worried about being made a POW, but as he recovers he reassesses his situation and begins to see the attraction of his new situation. The middle section of the film slows down but the final climax happens suddenly, with McBurney making a couple of decisions that take the women by surprise and seem out of character but raise the question of how well did they know him?

    If you are attracted to that Southern antebellum vibe, with polite sexual conflict from a female perspective then The Beguiled may be the film for you. This is light romp in long skirts with a frisson of danger, rather than a deep film. The more cynical might wonder at the luck of a good looking man finding himself trapped with so many good looking women 🎥

    Ian's rating 3/5

    6 Days

    The 1970s were a big time for hostage incidents, including hijacks. From the terrorist's point of view if things went well they would achieve their objective relatively quickly and some people would be inconvenienced but no-one would be hurt. Whereas with bombings and shootings it could take multiple attacks over weeks or months with many deaths and injuries to achieve the same result. Of course, there was no guarantee that governments would negotiate but in the 1970s they often did.

    In 1979 the Shah of Iran was overthrown and in the aftermath of the revolution, there was an uprising by the Arabs of Khuzestan province demanding autonomy. Khuzestan province which is on the border with Iraq at the end of the Persian Gulf, near Basra and has mixed population including Arabs. The new government in Iran put down the uprising killing about 100 people and imprisoning others.

    On 30 April 1980 6 gunmen attacked the Iranian Embassy in London and took the staff, people visiting the embassy and a policeman hostage. Their demand was to get the British government to get 91 Arabs released from Iranian prisons. 6 Days is a docudrama about that six day hostage drama.

    6 Days is directed by Kiwi Toa Fraser with Kiwi screenwriter Glenn Standring. Most of the film concentrates on the negotiations between the gunmen and the police (especially negotiator Max Vernon). It also follows the hostage drama from 3 other points of view: the SAS planning, training and executing the rescue, COBRA the high-level Whitehall committee that coordinated the police, SAS and government response and BBC reporter Kate Adie and her cameraman. The film makes it clear that the London Metropolitan Police were strongly against using violence and felt that they could negotiate an end to the situation. The SAS were keen to take over from the police and kill the gunmen. The Iranian government refused to cooperate with the UK government. Margaret Thatcher didn't want to give into the terrorists and wanted the SAS attack to be broadcast on TV.

    The film tells the story pretty straight and doesn't pull any surprises. It is most successful in its portrayal of the terrorist leader as he tries to control what is going on in the Embassy and his negotiations with Max Vernon. It's least successful part is trying to humanize the SAS. It focuses on Lance Corporal Rusty Firmin as the SAS plan and train for the attack, but it fails to do more than show him to be one of a bunch of arrogant gung-ho elite soldiers.

    The storming of the embassy on the 6th day by the SAS was a dramatic news event that I didn't see on TV (growing up in a TV-less house) but did see photos and read about in the NZ Herald and Time magazine. So it was interesting to find out a bit more about the behinds the scenes events.

    In Iran the 444 day hostage crisis at the US Embassy started in 1979 and ended in 1981. Later in 1980, Iraq invaded Iran concentrating on Khuzestan province at the start of the 8 year Iran-Iraq War. The only gunman to survive the siege was released from prison in 2008 and is living in Britain due to fears for his safety if deported to Iran.

    Ian's rating 3/5 Anne's rating 3.5/5

    Monday, August 07, 2017

    Una

    Una has never come to terms with the end of her first love affair which was brought to a sudden and unexpected halt. Years later she comes across a photo of her ex-lover and tracks down where Ray now works to confront him. He is shocked by her unannounced arrival at his workplace and the subsequent confrontation takes all day (though it is interrupted by a meeting he has to go to etc).

    Una is not only looking for answers, she is also needy and very angry with Ray and as the day wears on increasingly vengeful. Ray is initially defensive but gradually they talk though most of unresolved issues between them in a way that the professional help has been unable to resolve for Una.

    Rooney Mara portraits Una as a highly believable mercurial woman who is damaged goods. Ben Mendelsohn probably has the easier job as Ray. A man with a secret who is hiding from things.

    Una is not an easy film to like because the love affair that is the genesis of the film is one between Ray and Una when she was 13 and he was the man you lived next door. We are not supposed to think of such a relationship as a love affair but as child abuse. Both Ray who spent 4 years in jail and Una who had professional help once the police were involved have been schooled to regard it as child abuse but film suggests that neither completely believes this. 🎥

    Ian's rating 4/5