The Falling (2014)

*Warning - this movie does have sexual content that might not be appropriate for younger viewers. There is also some scenes that viewers may find disturbing or find upsetting*


Best known for her drama-documentary Dreams of a Life, director Carol Morley turns her attention to a group of friends at a boarding school in this mystery-drama.

In 1969 best friends Lydia (Masie Williams) and Abbie (Florence Pugh) attend an all girls’ school in England when tragedy strikes. Afterwards a fainting spell becomes a full on epidemic, but what is the cause?

This is a film more intent on provoking feelings and thoughts form the audience rather than answering all the question that the film raises. It will likely be a film to divide audiences, some will find its storytelling and visuals spellbinding and mesmerising, while others will just finding the constant fainting boring and lack of definitive conclusions boring.  

There aren’t many likeable characters, including the lead character Lydia but she is an interesting protagonist. Game of Thrones star Masie Williams shines in the role. Lydia is a complex and difficult character to read. Is she a victim of a mysterious epidemic or a manipulative young girl seeking attention? The film mostly leaves the answers for the viewer to decide.

While not explicit at times a touch of the supernatural sometimes seems to be at work. That sense of uncertainty at what is going on keeps the mystery going throughout the film. Morley makes the school itself and its surroundings seem to evoke a dreamlike experience and when the epidemic starts

The Falling is a mix of melodrama and coming of age story that can be infuriating at times but has stunning visuals and great performances. It won’t please all viewers but for those looking for something a bit different The Falling may entice you under its spell.

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