Sunday, 18 August 2013

Film Review: A FIELD IN ENGLAND (2013)

A Field in England - poster Director: Ben Wheatley
Writers: Ben Wheatley, Amy Jump
Running time: 90 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15

Genre: Drama/History/Thriller
UK Release date: 5th July 2013

Watched on Terrestrial PVR Sunday 18th August 2013.


This film has the rare distinction of being released in cinemas, on DVD and also on TV all on the same day. I’m not sure, but it may have also been released for download on the same day as well. I recorded it from the TV but it has been a while before I’ve had the chance to watch it. Quite an odd film, most of which I liked, but there were some parts that were too far out there for even me! Here’s a very brief summary before I give you my thoughts.

A Field in England - 4 Set during the English Civil War, the story concerns a group of men who find themselves in a large field, separated from the main battle. One of them, Whitehead (Reece Shearsmith), has bee tasked with finding and bringing to justice a thief known as O’Neil (Michael Smiley). The others, Trower (Julian Barratt), Jacob (Peter Ferdinando) and Cutler (Ryan Pope) are all soldiers with varying degrees of experience. Whitehead freely admits he’s a coward; he’s a bookish man who does not enjoy the cut and thrust of battle. They stop for a meal and have some mushrooms they find in the field. After this things start to go a bit freaky. They discover a rope and at the end of the rope they find O’Neil. Whitehead tries to arrest him but he turns the tables on him and takes Whitehead prisoner instead. Claiming there is a treasure in the field; O’Neil forces Whitehead to tell him where to dig. I will leave it there because from here on it get’s pretty weird.

A Field in England - 1 Filmed entirely in black and white and on a budget, I thought the filmmakers did a pretty good job. All the performances were excellent with Reece Shearsmith and Michael Smiley standing out. There are many unexpected plot twists in this one; it certainly keeps the audience on their toes. Quite a few bizarre effects used to show the effects of the mushrooms but I did like the use of close-ups. It is pretty gory despite being made in black and white; some of the effects are pretty gruesome. Over all, I pretty much enjoyed this one despite it’s strangeness in places. I would like to see it again sometime as I’m sure there’s much I missed.

SteelMonster’s verdict: RECOMMENDED

My score: 7.2/10.

IMDb Score: 6.0/10 (based on 1,510 votes when this review was written).

MetaScore: No data: (Based on 0 critic reviews provided by at the time of going to press).

A Field in England - 5 Rotten Tomatoes ‘Tomatometer’ Score: 88/100 (based on 25 reviews counted at the time of going to press).

Rotten Tomatoes ‘Audience’ Score: 64/100 (based on 547 user ratings counted at the time of going to press).

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