The Playlist

Review: Ben Wheatley's Dark, Gory & Profane 'A Field In England'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • February 6, 2014 5:19 PM
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  • 0 Comments
A Field In England
Imagine attempting a super-low-budget, rapidly shot mashup of the melancholic aesthetic of Ingmar Bergman, the comedic sensibility of Mel Brooks and the tonal uneasiness of Lars Von Trier -- you'd probably end up with a complete mess of a film. However, that's not the case for Ben Wheatley, whose willfully abstruse "A Field in England" more or less fits that bill (by way of Samuel Beckett, "The Wicker Man" and Sergio Leone, if you want to fine tune the comparison, but we could probably continue throwing names at it all day and finding most of them stick) and comes out as a totally unique, often brilliant, deliberate partial mess instead. Reteaming the director, who, off the back of his feature triptych of "Down Terrace," "Kill List" and "Sightseers" has become something of an indie phenomenon, with regular writer Amy Jump, the film is the most formally experimental, and probably the least approachable, of the director's titles to date. But it's further proof of Wheatley's singular sensibilities as a filmmaker: the film's dark comedy, occasional gory violence and constant profanity are immediately recognizable as hallmarks, even as the black and white cinematography (often very beautiful), period setting and parable-like feel sees him move into new, uncharted territory.

10 Films To See In February

  • By Kristen Lopez
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  • February 3, 2014 12:19 PM
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  • 1 Comment
10 Films To See In February
The shortest month of the year can still yield ten movies worthy of your attention! We continue through the doldrums of that cold time called “every month before summer,” and while March has transformed into a time for decent fare, we still have to blaze through February. The films assembled are a mix of blockbusters and art house, mindless entertainment and incisive filmmaking, so settle down and get ready to explore the month of February.

Check Out Mind-Expanding New Poster & Pics For Ben Wheatley's 'A Field In England'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 31, 2014 1:26 PM
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  • 0 Comments
A Field In England
Movies about drugs, people tripping out on drugs, or that promise a druggy experience as a viewer, are not in short supply, but there are few that actually live up to those promises. However, when Ben Wheatley decides to make a movie set in the Civil War in 17th-Century England, that centers on three deserters who eat some mushrooms and proceed to go on psychedelic trip into magic and madness — well, you're going to get just that.

Watch: Martin Scorsese Presents The U.S. Trailer & Poster For Ben Wheatley's 'A Field In England'

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • January 14, 2014 1:47 PM
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  • 6 Comments
Since 2011, Ben Wheatley has been working at a ridiculous pace, with three feature films under his belt ("Kill List," "Sightseers" and "A Field In England"), a segment in the horror anthology "The ABCs Of Death," and a handful of other films in the pipeline. And while he's earned adulation from critics, festival audiences and the cult crowd, the name of the latest booster likely made Wheatley's day a little better.

The Most Memorable Movie Moments Of 2013

  • By The Playlist Staff
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  • December 24, 2013 12:40 PM
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  • 23 Comments
The Most Memorable Movie Moments 2013
Can you feel it? The end of 2013 is hurtling toward us like a stampeding rhino. And as our year-end wind down is winding down, we're letting ourselves off the leash a little and assembling this unwieldy monster—an unashamedly scrappy and random list of The Most Memorable Movie Moments of the Year aka Every Damn Thing That We Couldn't Find Anywhere Else to Talk About. Those of you who like a little more formal rigor in your year-in-review programming may wish to check out Best Shots, or Best Music Moments, or Best Documentaries, or Best Soundtracks, or Best Scores or Action Sequences, Child Performances, TV Episodes, Worst Films… or really any of our other 2013 wrap-up features (just hit our "Best of 2013" tag) all of which were put together with about 83% more discipline than this one.

5 Films Of Horror & Madness To Watch If You Love 'The Wicker Man'

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • September 24, 2013 3:16 PM
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  • 8 Comments
5 Films To See Before 'The Wicker Man'
No, not the bees. The beloved, now unassailably classic original “The Wicker Man” turns 40 this year, and this week a version dubbed ‘The Final Cut’ makes its way to theaters, with director Robin Hardy’s blessing. If it were any other four-decade-old British horror film getting the same treatment, it would likely be the first chance many of us would have had to see it on the big screen. But “The Wicker Man” has grown in critical esteem and public adoration since its scrappy, perfunctory first run, which means that in recent years its various cuts have been staples on the late-night-horror/Halloween/Midnight Madness circuit. Not that that necessarily makes us less likely to go see this version—as is almost a requisite for a truly cult film, “The Wicker Man” does not just stand up to, it pretty much demands repeated viewing, and yields some new level of WTF delight every time. And with cinematography this evocative and of-its-time and an ending this epic, the bigger the screen, the better.

TIFF 2013: 'How I Live Now,' 'Southcliffe,' 'A Field In England,' 'Therese,' 'Blood Ties,' 'Child Of God' & More Added

  • By Kevin Jagernauth
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  • August 13, 2013 10:11 AM
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  • 0 Comments
Saoirse Ronan, How I Live Now
As if the 2013 lineup for the Toronto International Film Festival could not get any more stacked and outstanding, here comes another batch of titles that are sure to send the schedules of those attending into what will likely be a ridiculous slate of back-to-back-to-back-to-back movie days. But who's complaining?

Spend 30 Minutes Diving Into The Making Of Ben Wheatley's 'A Field In England' With New Featurettes

  • By Ben Brock
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  • July 9, 2013 10:45 AM
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  • 0 Comments
"A Field In England" (review here), the mind-bending, low-budget English Civil War psychedelic horror film from Ben Wheatley (“Kill List,” “Sightseers”) has rapidly become one of those films that is much bigger than just what's on the screen. First, attention focused on the unconventional multi-platform release, which saw it come out in cinemas at the same time as on various forms of home media. Now, the film's penumbra has expanded with the jaw-dropping “Masterclass” section of its website.

Karlovy Vary Awards: Ben Wheatley's 'A Field In England' & 'Bluebird' Among Winners

  • By Jessica Kiang
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  • July 6, 2013 4:25 PM
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  • 1 Comment
...and so our short sojourn to the 2013 Karlovy Vary International Film Festival draws to a close. Our time here this year was so brief that we feel guilty in not having seen more of the films In Competition, and across the various diverse and always thoughtfully-stocked sidebars, but now that the awards have been announced, we know we’ll have a starting point for all the catching up we’ve got to do.

Karlovy Vary Review: Ben Wheatley's 'A Field In England'

  • By Jessica Kiang
  • |
  • July 4, 2013 3:46 PM
  • |
  • 15 Comments
A Field In England
Imagine attempting a super-low-budget, rapidly shot mashup of the melancholic aesthetic of Ingmar Bergman, the comedic sensibility of Mel Brooks and the tonal uneasiness of Lars Von Trier -- you'd probably end up with a complete mess of a film. However, that's not the case for Ben Wheatley, whose willfully abstruse "A Field in England" more or less fits that bill (by way of Samuel Beckett, "The Wicker Man" and Sergio Leone, if you want to fine tune the comparison, but we could probably continue throwing names at it all day and finding most of them stick) and comes out as a totally unique, often brilliant, deliberate partial mess instead. Reteaming the director, who, off the back of his feature triptych of "Down Terrace," "Kill List" and "Sightseers" has become something of an indie phenomenon, with regular writer Amy Jump, the film is the most formally experimental, and probably the least approachable, of the director's titles to date. But it's further proof of Wheatley's singular sensibilities as a filmmaker: the film's dark comedy, occasional gory violence and constant profanity are immediately recognizable as hallmarks, even as the black and white cinematography (often very beautiful), period setting and parable-like feel sees him move into new, uncharted territory.

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