Review of "Gwen” by The Headless Critic
Gwen – 2018
Production by: BFI Film Fund, Endore Productions
Distribution by: Shudder
In an isolated existence of the remote mountainside of Snowdonia in 19th century Wales, a teenage girl named Gwen (Elenor Worthington-Cox) attempts to hold her family together against all odds. Her Father (Dyfrig Evans) is away at war. Her mother Elen (Maxine Peake) has been stricken with an illness that makes her eldest daughter question her sanity. Something has killed their flock of sheep. Their crop is turned rotten. Their land is spoiled. Someone must care for her little sister Mari (Jodie Innes). Their situation grows dire as something is closing in on them.
Writer and director William McGregor captures the beautiful landscape of the Wales countryside in a period piece that transports you through time as beautifully grim and more accurately portrayed as Robert Eggers' The VVitch. Elenor Worthington-Cox gives an outstanding performance in a heartfelt story of a time even young Gwen doesn’t fully understand. Maxine Peake is absolutely magnificent as Gwen’s mother. It’s an excerpt of a life lived nearly two hundred years ago. The story of Gwen is a dark, depressing, an almost gothic tale that shows us to be thankful for what we have for at any moment it could be taken away. It’s stunning cinematography, with outstanding performances and a simple tale with an abrupt ending of things never getting better.
Available Now on Shudder
4 out of 5 Headless Critics