BEAST 2018 movie review – “Small town, big hell” is a Japanese saying which could well apply to the plot of this movie directed by Michael Pearce and set in a small community in England. Moll (Jessie Buckley) is 27-year-old, she sings in the church choir which is conducted by her mother Hilary (Geraldine James), works as a tourist guide, and apparently has no life of her own, since she is subjected to the firm authority of her mother. Her father has Alzheimer. The movie starts with a family reunion, and although the motive is Moll’s birthday, she is not much-paid attention to, except for the much older local police agent Clifford (Trystan Gravelle) a family friend who gives her a present and seems to have some sexual intentions toward the young woman that he would keep ambiguous.
Obfuscated with the people in the party, Moll leaves for a club, meets a guy, drinks a lot, and early in the morning will meet Pascal (Johnny Flynn) a free-spirited guy who would show an interest in the young woman and with whom she would eventually fall in love, defying her family and most of the community as well.
In the meantime, the whole community has been shocked by the murder of a young girl, precisely the night that Moll was out. Things will get worse for Moll and Pascal, now living together, when the police come to arrest Pascal on suspicions of being the murderer of the missing girl. From that moment on tension will increase in the small community unveiling the not-so-hidden prejudices and hatreds plaguing the isolated group of people.
Moll and Pascal, two strange characters with some dark episodes in their past would get together, but their relationship would also be marked by what they are in the present.
“Beast” is an engaging psychological thriller, not without some elements of implausibility, but it effectively conveys a message of uncertainty about what some people really are.
Length: 107 min