Movie Reviews

Browse through reviews of films I’ve watched recently. Hope it helps!

  • Dark- Season 3 Review
    The Summary  Dark, set against the backdrop of the German town of Winden is about a few children, their families and the extraordinary events that transform their lives. As the seasons progress, you get to know the characters better as dark secrets about their lives begin to emerge.  After a child vanishes, the inhabitants ofContinue reading “Dark- Season 3 Review”
  • The Animal Farm and Advertising
    This topic may seem a little strange. What does George Orwell’s Animal Farm have to do with Advertising? To truly comprehend this, first let’s revisit the Animal Farm with a short summary and a re-introduction to its characters. Summary of the Animal Farm The Animal Farm is an essay about farm animals who take controlContinue reading “The Animal Farm and Advertising”
  • The Sinner- Season 3- Review
    The Summary As the third season of The Sinner unravels, we meet Jamie Burns (Matt Bomer) a college professor and his wife Leela (Parisa Fitz-Henley). Leela is pregnant and is a few days away from giving birth to their first child.  One evening, Jamie’s old college friend, Nick Haas (Chris Messina) comes uninvited to hisContinue reading “The Sinner- Season 3- Review”
  • Top 10 Quotes on Advertising
    To fill a glass, you must empty it first. The equivalent applies to advertising. Sometimes, you must unlearn the new, in favour of the old.  Everyone enters advertising with enthusiasm and passion. But once you’ve been put through the ringer, passion takes a backseat and enthusiasm dissolves into a puddle.  Fortunately, when it comes toContinue reading “Top 10 Quotes on Advertising”
  • Little Women – Movie Review
    The Summary Little Women revolves around four young women, their doting mother, their committed house help, a generous neighbour and an attractive rich young man. In the beginning, Little Women appears to be a story about do-gooders.  While it stays true to Louisa May Alcott’s classic released during the 1860s, the scriptwriter Gerwig, gets toContinue reading “Little Women – Movie Review”

The Summary

The Droving is a folk spine-chiller with a supernatural slant. Its ambience is intense and dark with full spotlight on the primary character, and his search for his missing sister. It is a simple but layered tale that will keep you riveted from start to finish.

The plot revolves around a soldier who comes back home to search for his missing sister. Her disappearance is associated with a cultish festival called The Droving. The festival includes rituals and people donning masks of animals.  

After he contacts Tess, a lady from his sister Megan’s old hiking group, he is led down a path that will take him to an abhorrent truth.

The Review  

Martin (played by Daniel Oldroyd ) has more to him than what meets the eye at first impression. His trajectory, quite a bit of it rooted in a gradually uncovered backstory, is the thing that steers the film. 

Martin’s inner journey is more convoluted than anticipated. It creates a basic disquiet that nicely offsets Droving’s poetic visuals. Though Martin’s understated presence stitches the film’s unusual elements together, his performance just falls a wee bit short of convincing when the moment comes to unveil his most dramatic levels of psychic damage. 

The director’s visual storytelling is so compelling that it’s almost a character in itself. From  frightfully calm pre-celebration shots of Martin strolling the streets to the more frantic festival footage,  Popov sets a chilling stage for this thriller. 

Martin’s quest for Megan, and how he achieves this is central to the story. Through unobtrusive flashbacks we become acquainted with Megan and Martin somewhat better.  When figuring out the real story, seemingly insignificant details that are done or said during the Christmas Eve flashback  delineate the two characters and their relationship to one another in a critical manner.

The true nature of Martin’s character is slowly revealed during the search. On the other hand, there’s a folk tale that murmurs through Cumbria. The folk nature of the tale and characters brings a hint of menace to the story. The Merchant is a mystical figure who trades souls instead of cattle during the festival.  While  the celebration with illuminated paper cows parades through the town – the creepy part, the old rituals are played out in obscure caves. 

Daniel Oldroyd delivers an outstanding performance depicting nuances of hurt and torment very persuasively. His frustration is palpable as we watch him go from pillar to post to look for his sister. His patience is wearing out and he begins doing and saying things that seem off. He doesn’t start off as evil, but by the end, the yearning for his sister’s return forces him to the dark side that he was fighting against. It is a beautifully nuanced performance but a sinister one too. 

The home stretch of the story is well done and asks how far you are willing to go to discover the truth or exact vengeance. The editing could have benefited with less altering and the supporting characters didn’t have much to do. They were just pieces that helped push the narrative forward. The  visual language was phenomenal but the dialogue didn’t match up at all times. 

 My Honest Opinion

 I am a big fan of films like the Wickerman and Hex, so I thoroughly enjoyed this one. I loved the build-up leading to the final climax and the folk lore aspect of the story. 

It is an astute call to have the camera stick to Martin at the expense of other characters in a particular scene. But it worked well, and added to the whimsy of the story.  

The climax was quite plucky too and could be lament-worthy for some. But for me, it was the piece of resistance.  

Stacked up with amazing visuals, eerie expectation and merged with a foreboding score, The Droving is a novel and thrilling watch. Folk horror at its hair-raising best!

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