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MEN – Ben Salisbury and Geoff Barrow

May 31, 2022 Leave a comment

Original Review by Jonathan Broxton

Folk horror is a sub-genre within the larger horror pantheon which uses folklore, coupled with a rural setting and themes of isolation, religion, and the power of nature, to terrify audiences. It is often found in British films, with efforts like Witchfinder General and The Wicker Man standing out as defining works, while more recent films like The Witch, Midsommar, and Lamb, have broadened the horizons internationally. Writer-director Alex Garland’s film Men returns to the genre’s roots, being set in an idyllic village in the English countryside, but from this starting point he takes viewers on a brutal, hallucinogenic journey through themes of misogyny, toxic masculinity, and post-traumatic stress. Jessie Buckley stars as Harper, a widow who decides to take a holiday in the English countryside following the apparent suicide of her husband. Once she is settled into the pretty house she is renting, Jessie meets several men in the village – the owner of the house, a vicar, a teenage boy, a policeman, a pub landlord – all of whom are played by Rory Kinnear. Most disturbingly, she frequently encounters a naked man (also Kinnear), who appears to be stalking her. Read more…