A troubled woman living in an isolated community finds herself pulled between the control of her oppressive family and the allure of a secretive outsider suspected of a series of brutal murders, in writer-director Michael Pearce’s feature debut.
The press conference for this film takes place on Monday, September 11 at 1pm.
There is darkness inside all of us. How it emerges is the central theme explored in this riveting and exceptionally realized first feature from Michael Pearce.
Moll is the black sheep in her otherwise reserved, stiff-upper-lip British family and their country-club world. Her adventurous spirit and fiery temperament are too much for them to handle. Home-schooled by her controlling mother following a violent incident in her preteen past, Moll is, at first glance, quiet and unassuming; but how long will she be punished for something she did all those years ago?
After escaping her own garden birthday party in favour of a night out dancing with strangers, she meets Pascal, a rugged hunter with a guarded past. He proves to be just the tonic she needs. Eager to leave her family, she makes the sweetly satisfying, if rash, decision, to move in with him. But when a local teenage girl goes missing following a string of murders on their otherwise tranquil isle of Jersey, Moll must decide what and whom to trust — her own instincts or the animal she now calls home?
With an intense visual style and an eye for dirty details that evokes British auteur Andrea Arnold, Pearce sets the stage for a thriller that has you admiring and fearing its central protagonists in equal measure.
Anchored by the fierce performance of TIFF 2017 Rising Star Jessie Buckley as Moll and seething in an atmosphere of brooding tension, Beast asks us to consider what it means to love someone not in spite of, but because of, their imperfections.