Amy Jump

a-field-in-england

Director Ben Wheatley has gotten so much attention from his last two films that we can probably now think of him as a buzzed-about name whose projects are greatly anticipated, and no longer as an underappreciated talent who needs to be treated like a discovery. With Kill List he showed off a unique ability to jump from genre to genre within the same movie and always keep his viewer guessing, and then with Sightseers he showed an ability to mine dark humor out of even the most violent and disturbing behavior. When you go into a Ben Wheatley movie you never quite know what to expect, but you can expect to see something unique. His newest film, A Field in England, opens on an empty field that’s on the outskirts of what appears to be a large battle. It closes on that field too. As a matter of fact, the action of the film never leaves that field, but a good amount of interesting things manage to happen anyway. The story starts with the promise of a road picture, as a quartet of men who have all deserted the battle in various ways come together and decide to travel to an ale house. After they come upon a patch of flourishing mushrooms and consume a good quantity of them though, the situation then becomes altered. Post-mushrooms is when the film goes from being a simple deserter’s tale to being about encounters with an Irishman who may be the devil (or […]

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English Civil War

Coming off the gut-punch success of Kill List and hoping for similar results with his forthcoming Sightseers (and his ABCs of Death entry), Ben Wheatley is apparently going to wandering around in a war-torn field looking for treasure and mind-altering substances. Not a bad way to spend a sunny English weekend. According to Film4, Wheatley will be directing A Field in England – the first feature to be fully financed by the Film4.0 initiative. Amy Jump, who co-wrote Kill List and edited Sightseers, will co-write this with Wheatley as well. The movie, which will star  Michael Smiley, Peter Ferdinando, Reece Shearsmith, Julian Barratt, Richard Glover and Ryan Pope, focuses on a group of men who bail on a vicious English Civil War battle (circa 1648) only to be caught by two strange men looking for a treasure in the middle of a mushroom-heavy field. Then, chaos reigns. Charles I probably won’t be happy about it. It’s refreshing to see a period drama that sounds wholly unstuffy – a look into the world of the mid-1600s that isn’t all dry scoffing and sobriety. Although, without any Grateful Dead to aid them, it’s unclear what sort of tasty grooves these military men will be jamming to while paranoia takes hold. Jokes aside, that sound you hear is either three cheers for bizarre original filmmaking from talented storytellers or the distant drumbeat of a weird war movie on the way.

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published: 12.19.2014
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published: 12.18.2014
C-
published: 12.17.2014
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