The Ferryman (2018) UK Dir: Elliott Maguire
Nicola Holt, Garth Maunders, Philip Scott-Shurety
Following a failed suicide attempt, a young woman named Mara awakes in hospital and is greeted by her estranged father Roland, who she initially rejects. Confused, angry and resentful she agrees to live with Roland while she recovers and attends a therapy group. Very soon, anyone who gets too close to Mara inexplicably takes their own life, and she finds herself stalked by a mysterious spectral figure…
Filmed in the city of Manchester using iPhone 7’s, THE FERRYMAN is the debut feature of writer/director Elliott Maguire, and an assured piece of work it is. Deftly constructing a cold atmosphere with a restrained use of light and building a mounting sense of dread, the lean script is abetted by a bravura emotive performance by Nicola Holt as the disoriented Mara, with Garth Maunders in support as the increasingly confused Roland. This little homegrown indie gem reminded me the 70’s BBC MR James adaptations and the short lived Hammer Horror anthology tv series, with its very British restraint in instilling in the viewer an increasing sense of unease as the story unfolds.
Give this one a go and support indie filmmakers.Horror fans in particular will find much to admire here. I’m already looking forwards to what Mr Maguire does next. THE FERRYMAN goes on release to Vimeo on 13th April, and you can pre-order it here to rent for a bargain 99p. Get those pizzas in.