Film Review: A Banquet

Betsy and Isabelle

When discussing horror cinema, thoughts naturally turn to vampires, werewolves, witches and other supernatural creatures, which have dominated popular culture. These are the monsters of our childhood and the popular face of the genre. That or humans who embody, whether by nature, nurture or by dint of possession, something inherently evil. However, as most of us probably know to our cost, there’s nothing more terrifying than the horrors our own brains can conjure up. A Banquet plays with these notions of internal terror.

Recently widowed Holly (Sienna Guillory) is doing her best to keep it together for her two teenage daughters, Betsey (Jessica Alexander) and Isabelle (Ruby Stokes). This veneer begins to crumble when eldest Betsey, who is struggling with difficult decisions about her future, experiences an enlightenment at a house party. She declares that her body is no longer her own, refuses to eat but doesn’t lose any weight. Holly has to make a terrible choice.

A Banquet is a strange and unusual film which is hard to categorise, and not exactly easy to describe. Its strength is in the world Ruth Paxton painstakingly creates. It’s almost hyperreal and adds an element of doubt, not to mention a good deal of style, to proceedings. In essence, A Banquet is about belief. Belief in yourself, belief in your family and belief in the unknown. It’s a powerful work of psychological horror which lingers long after the final credits have rolled.  

A Banquet opens in select US theatres, Digital platforms and VOD on 18 February. It will be available in the UK in cinemas and on Digital Platforms on 11 March.

Previous Live Review: Half Man Half Biscuit - The Leadmill, Sheffield 11.02.22
Next Half Man Half Biscuit - O2 Ritz Manchester

No Comment

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.