Intensity or Insanity?
Maia (Ione Butler) is a model struggling to keep her head above water. Things have not been good for her and her relationship with her husband is on the rocks. She lives with the hope that celebrity photographer, Francesca Allman (Laura Martin-Simpson), and the session she has with her will be a turning point in her career and thereby knock her out of the depressed state she has been in lately. However, things do not go according to plan—it seems that Francesca, suffering from severe OCD, has gone into isolation in north Wales in a house with a strange and weird past. Maia travels to her and Francesca helps her to build up confidence while at the same time deals with her own obsession and before either woman realizes it, things go out of control and Francesca experiences sexual desire for Maia. Just at the same time, Maia feels threatened by some presence in the house, something behind Francesca’s comprehension. Are these two women being haunted by past lives—exactly what is going on?
Maia has hoped that spending time with Francesca will reignite her modeling career but as the weekend they spend together moves forward, passions are wild and the dark history of the house comes to light.
This is really a difficult movie to review without giving something away. The movie keeps us wondering and the twists and turns show us that we really do not know what is going on here and we begin to feel a bit claustrophobic. This is an intricate movie thriller with wonderful direction by Carl Medland and Amarjhett Singh. The acting is excellent all over the small cast of four. The cinematography is gorgeous and there is a haunting beauty in what we see. It totally compliments the eerie atmosphere and the tension of the story while the slow camerawork gives us a sense of ill at ease.
There is a scene with psychiatrist played by Caroline Burns Cooke that is intimidating—she is cold and calculating and we feel the darkness. Jake Marshall plays a mysterious man who is frightening.
The screenplay is well written and the actors truly bring it to life and what we see is a seductive mystery that keeps us guessing.