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New Release Review - Hinterland

Two old friends reconnect over three days.


Review by Schyler Martin

Directed by: Harry MacQueen

Starring: Harry Macqueen, Lori Campbell

In one of many stunning shots in Harry MacQueen’s lovely debut feature, Hinterland, recently reconnected old friends Harvey and Lola sit beside each other on a small boat in the middle of the ocean. The boat rocks gently with the waves, and the camera follows the movement ­— back and forth, back and forth. And Harvey and Lola move too, shifting as the boat shifts. They move together, shoulders barely brushing in closeness that isn’t necessarily literal, but is certainly heavy in the air. The scene is quite a good representation of the film as a whole. It’s simple and quiet; it is two friends, drifting together, ebbing and flowing as their lives ebb and flow.
Set over just three days, the story is simple and never reaches for dramatic plot twists or extreme actions. The characters are real, likable and relatable, but flawed in their own ways, and watching them feels like watching two friends that you’ve been rooting for to get together for years, but you’re never convinced it’s going to happen.
Hinterland is like a breath of fresh air in the way that it is more concerned with what its characters don’t say, as opposed to what they do say. Their quiet glances, their heavy sighs, and their soft, playful pushes mean more than the little dialogue that they speak. It’s a strong and unique form of filmmaking, and it’s one that director MacQueen clearly excels at.
The cinematography is gorgeous, with an emphasis on shining sunlight and naturalistic settings. The acting is strong, with both leads proving that they are worthy of major roles. And the writing is consistently strong.
Hinterland may not break new ground or set any records, but it is undeniably pleasant and a relaxing change in pace. It’s worth seeking out.

HINTERLAND is in UK cinemas and on demand 27th February




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