Monday, 30 March 2015

Indie Film, Hinterland

David Martin takes a roadtrip and discovers lost love and a childhood memory of Knickerbocker Glories....

Hinterland is a wonderful film which focuses on a friendship, forged in childhood and the bonds that are developed. Written and Directed by Harry McQueen, he also takes the male lead, its a stunning debut for Harry and shows a real passion for intense and deeply personal film making. Harry's portrayal of caring and devoted Harvey who comes to the aid of troubled and free spirited Lola, brilliantly performed by Singer, Songwriter, Lori Campbell. Lori is starring in her film debut as Lola, yet she shines on screen with a beautiful assured performance which compliments perfectly Harry's protective and loving Harvey. Hinterland was shot in only 13 days with the project being workshopped for only a few months prior to this. Filmed on location in London and Cornwall, Hinterland tells the story of a road trip the two take together and the discoveries that they make.

Lola is a girl on discovery and world travel that is cut short by the news that her father is having an affair. Traumatised, she returns to London in support of her devastated mother but also struggling to come to terms with her own feelings. The story begins as we see Harvey arranging to meet Lola and whisk her off for a weekend in Cornwall, where there two families shared many holidays together. Right from the outset Harvey is portrayed as an emotive yet emotionally stable character who wants to reach out and support Lola. Lola is a warm and outwardly expressive person who has no issue with her feelings yet, and at the same time, is unsure of her place in the world. This is something they both share yet are forging very different paths as they move into their late 20's. Harvey is in love with Lola yet unsure of if he should make this known and if Lola feels the same way. As we watch the two together on the beach and sharing a wonderful moment with a chat over walkie talkies (something they used to do as children) there friendship is deepened and rekindled. As the film progresses we catch a glimpse of the different worlds that Lola and Harvey live in and possible conflicts within their personalities. Lola is travelling and has clearly a lot more to discover, whilst her parents failed relationship have raised questions that she doesn't have answers for she is not going to find them moping at home. Harvey is more stable and less impetuous but lacks the ability, at least at the start, to move outside of his comfort zone. Still living with his Mum, he is writing and is the intellectual of the two.

Hinterland is a film full of passion, emotion and wonderful beauty, which is set strikingly against the backdrop of the Cornish coastal areas. As they explore places they used to wander as children and even an old boarded up restaurant they inevitably become closer. The film builds to a wonderfully emotive fire scene where the two are cuddling for warmth by the glowing embers. Lola is not ready to settle down and her fathers infidelity has marked her deeper than Harvey realised. She conveys the belief that she now questions the view of one partner for life and whether it can ever work. This is devastating for Harvey who can no longer express his feelings for her. Whilst Lori's performance is defined by show of emotion and inner turmoil, Harry's is brilliantly understated and a performance which wells with passion and beauty whilst using very little words. It is emotion that is evident in his eyes and, quite simply, it tears you apart.

The final scenes, back in London, at a party Lola had invited Harvey to are, like the rest of the film, beautifully intimate and wonderfully shot. Using a body artist with neon lights that are wired to her partners heartbeat, it perfectly highlights the films of lost childhood, shattered beliefs and unrequited love. As Harvey drives off, we hope to find himself and start a journey of his own, Lola is changed as well by the weekend and her free spiritedness certainly not lost but perhaps more grounded. Hinterland is full of breath taking moments that engage the viewer in a way few films can. Never badly paced or feeling padded at any stage it is a film that highlights the difficulties faced with growing up. When our core beliefs are challenged by events that rock us what do we do? Where do we turn? Childhood memories can lend solace but all too soon there is a need to return to London, or real life.

Lori uses her musical and singing ability in a way that compliments the film without overwhelming and the song, self penned, she sings during the fire scene is poignant and beautiful. Quite simply, Hinterland represents just why I love independent films so much as they have a freedom to move in a direction that may be more difficult with financing secured from larger production houses. Harry has a talent for great direction and the film is a wonderful way to begin ,what I hope, will be a productive and long lasting career.

Read my interview with Writer and Director Harry McQueen here and Star, Lori Campbell here

 You can find out more about Hinterland here or download the film from Itunes here, Amazon Prime here or Blinkbox here

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