Dir: Fran Lea
Production Company: Film London Microwave Feature, BBC Films, Spring Pictures, Soda Pictures
Starring: Anna Madeley, Christine Bottomley and Emun Elliot
A tale of two sisters locked in a twisted tug-of-love/hate, the ambitious low-budget Brit-pic Strawberry Fields (2012, Soda, 15) benefits from strong performances (Anna Madeley and Christine Bottomley are both excellent), evocative camerawork by Dave Miller and an atmosphere dripping with sensual dread. While talented director/co-writer Frances Lea may sometimes struggle to reconcile the complex themes wrestling for our attention here, there's no faulting the heady air that she conjures, blending the intoxicating promise of the Kent countryside and the stifling grip of tightening family coils amid the overarching landscape of a self-destructive psychological drama. Although overall the film troubled me on first viewing, I found individual moments from Strawberry Fields coming back to haunt me in the days that followed – always a good sign.
Mark Kermode oct 14 2012