In the aftermath of a personal tragedy, Harper (Jessie Buckley), retreats from her London apartment to a beautifully appointed historic country house for what she hopes will be a two week period of recuperation. On arrival, she is introduced to the owner (Rory Kinnear), an ingratiating twit, who nevertheless convinces her that the house, with its bucolic surroundings, and proximity to an idyllic village, is the ideal place for her to relax and begin the healing process. But someone or something from the surrounding woods appears to be stalking her. Simmering disquiet swiftly escalates into full-blown terror as Harper is plunged into a surreal nightmare in which she must confront her darkest memories. A brilliant, visionary exploration of trauma and toxic masculinity, Alex Garland’s feverish, shape-shifting film comes shot through with a shiver of folkloric horror.
Notes by David O’Mahony