Friday 28 June 2019
The Black Forest - premiered at Edinburgh International Film Festival 2019
Writer-director Ruth Platt’s The Black Forest follows two dysfunctional British families spending a summer break together in the Black Forest near the beautiful historic city of Freiburg in Germany.
Right from the start it's obvious that this isn't going to be as relaxing a trip as everyone might hope. There are immediate tensions with one family arriving late and their mother paying obsessive attention to her mobile phone, barely lifting her face to say hello to the other family. The six children together run wild in the holiday cottage. The families can't agree on how to spend the holiday, one family wanting to organise everything to a strict timetable, the other just wanting to take things easy.
They take a walk up to the beautiful waterfalls near their cottage, trek through the Black Forest and visit the funfairs that offer amazing views of the Black Forest from their cable cars and fairground rides. While the children enjoy the moment, whether that's the excitement of the fairground or immersing themselves in nature, the parents argue and bicker. Secrets and tensions come out in the open.
We're often told getting out into nature is good for our mental health, but i'M not sure that works for the adults in these families!
This will be a holiday to remember, and life probably won't be the same for any of the party when they retum home - but will the changes be for the better or worse? (Meanwhile, in a different wooded part of Germany, another very different story is unfolding in Endzeit (which I review here).
The Black Forest was nominated for the 2019 Michael Powell Award for Best British Feature Film.
The Black Forest received its world premiere as part of the Edinburgh International Film Festival at 1825, Thursday 27 June at the Odeon, Lothian Road and screens again at 1530 Saturday 29 June at Vue Omni Centre. You can book tickets here.
You can read my earlier reviews from Edinburgh International Film Festival 2019, by following the links below:
Boyz in the Wood a group of teenage boys get lost in the Scottish Highlands.
2040 - can technology offer solutions to our current climate and ecological crises?
Bait - Cornish fishermen try to adapt to a changing world
How to Fake a War (on my Shapeshifting Green blog) what happens when a rock star decides to meddle in international affairs?
Farm Animals on Film - featuring The Biggest Little Farm - an inspiring story of the creation of a sustainable biodiverse farm in California, plus Vulture, an experimental film about farm animals.
Virgin and Extra: Land of the Olive Oil.
Chef Diaries Scotland: Spanish Chefs the Roca brothers take the viewer on a culinary road trip round Scotland
Up the Mountain - a year in an artists' studio in the Chinese mountains.
The Amber Light - a cinematic ode to Scotland's national drink
Aren't You Happy (on my Shapeshifting Green blog) - a writer searches for the meaning of life while not actually writing anything
The Deer - a Basque language film following two poachers in a national park on the outskirts of San Sebastien.
Hurt by Paradise - a poet struggles to find a publisher, an actresss struggles to get a part.
Disclaimer: I have a press pass for the film festival and attended a free press screening of these films.