Sunday, 27 April 2014
Known documentarian Alex Walker presents his first feature film Fossil which is released on DVD and VOD on Monday 28th April from Rabbit Publicity.
Harking back to the famous French cinema of the 1960s and 70s such as La Piscine and Le Mepris, the film is also influenced by the psychological drama Knife in the Water by Roman Polanski. The film focuses on an English couple, Paul and Mills (short for Camilla) seek to rekindle their fading marriage following a miscarriage, they choose to go to a French countryside retreat to seek privacy and a chance for romance to resurface. The potential for redemption is disrupted by the arrival of another couple an American and his French girlfriend who hijack their holiday home.
As the couples become more friendly, sexual tension rises to the surface and secrets begin to unravel as familiarity breeds contempt and a class war between the two males appears.
In the first few scenes, we see the English couple separate from each other. Paul (John Sackville) travels to a medieval village, whilst Mills (Edith Bukovics) stays at the poolside. Whilst Paul is happy to wander, Mills is feeling sad looking at her face and twiddling the wedding ring as she contemplates the thought of leaving Paul.
After an argument, Paul gets lost and bumps his head on a fossil and upon their return to their holiday home they notice Richard (Grant Masters) and his beau, Julie (Carla Juri) in their pool. After an initial provocation, the English pair allow the outsiders to remain for dinner and eventually stay for the majority of their holiday. However, the psychology and the dynamic causes friction to appear leading to a shocking incident to happen and change the course of the film.
Featuring only the four performers mentioned, Walker's concise script allows all four roles to gestate naturally in the conversations which show a keen ear to dialogue but nevertheless carry significant weight as secrets are shared. Walker makes the point that sometimes you cannot even confide your biggest secret to your life partner, Mills does eventually share the big secret with Paul by which time it is too late.
Walker, who also is editor, edits efficiently although he is somewhat let down by the musical score by Patrick Burniston which sounds very ominous over the opening credits which shows his hand too soon, yet their is a lighter moment of scoring twenty minutes into the film which would have served the opening better.
Walker is helped by his cinematographer Ollie Downey (who shot the Bafta winning short Mixtape) who shot the film on a RED One camera at the height of summer. The definition of the picture is high quality with such clarity and beauty of the French landscape.
The acting is superb by all involved, though the most arresting performance is by that of John Sackville as the husband Paul; a man clearly in love with his wife who is unsure of what to do at times yet Walker allows Paul to hold the screen at times and his raised eyebrow here or there speaks volumes for the way Paul feels at that moment.
Fossil is out on 28th April on DVD and VOD
Watch the trailer here