the underlying material of David Peace's novels, but the "Red Riding
Trilogy," while strong in performances and atmosphere, is a daunting
tangle of characters, time periods, crimes and cover-ups that is more
"who's where" than whodunit.
Awash in fine craftsmanship and bestowing nice surprises, the films, which premiered at Telluride, are always engaging. Cinephiles attracted to the subject matter and the talent will turn up at theaters in February or grab IFC's simultaneous VOD release.
From the get-go, most of the "Red Riding" villains (corrupt coppers, a developer/scoundrel) are obvious, so the hunt for the killer of little girls and one woman is just a gimmick. Instead, the trilogy, set in the
Paranoia and evil run through all three films. (The "Red Riding" title surely alludes to the innocence-meets-horror clash of the fairy tale.) The recurring characters, events and dreary locale also provide glue, while three directors -- Julian Jarrold (the recent "Brideshead Revisited"), James Marsh ("Man on Wire") and Anand Tucker ("Hilary and Jackie") -- lend their styles to Tony Grisoni's scripts.
Jarrold's "1974," imbued with classic noir elements and a dollop of "
Eddie is AWOL when Clare Kemplay's body is discovered. Her unsolved murder haunts the three films. He follows clues that lead him to sleazy development tycoon John Dawson (Sean Bean) and inevitable cop sources, including detective inspector Maurice Jobson (David Morrissey) and two sadistic cops without conscience, Bob Craven (Sean Harris) and Tommy Douglas (Tony Mooney). Eddie's trust in officer Bob Fraser (Steven Robertson), to whom he hands over evidence implicating
Noir anti-hero Eddie finds his femme fatale in Paula Garland (Rebecca Hall, moving 180 degrees away from her upper-crust "Vicky Cristina Barcelona" role), a victim's mother and
Add to the character overload the mentally unstable Michael Myshkin (Daniel Mays), accused of Clare's murder; Eddie's colleague Barry Gannon (Anthony Flanigan), who pays the price for learning too much; and BJ (Robert Sheehan), a down-and-out rent boy wholly entrenched in the intrigue. Eddie's investigative journey takes him to
In contrast to "1974's" grainy super-16mm evocation of
The narrative of "1980" is carried by veteran officer Peter Hunter (Paddy Considine), who had headed the Karachi Club shootout investigation years back and is brought from
"1983" revisits much that happened since "1974" but also clarifies the high-level conspiracy that perverted justice in
Opens: Friday, Feb. 5 (also on VOD) (IFC Films)
Production: Revolution Films, Channel 4
Cast: Andrew Garfield, Sean Bean, Mark Addy, Paddy Considine, Rebecca Hall, David Morrissey, Peter Mullan, Warren Clarke, Sean Harris, Tony Mooney, Steven Robertson, Gerard Kearns, Daniel Mays, Anthony Flanigan, Robert Sheehan
Directors: Julian Jarrold ("1974"), James Marsh ("1980"), Anand Tucker ("1983")
Screenwriter: Tony Grisoni, adapting from the books by David Peace
Producers: Andrew Eaton, Anita Overland, Wendy Brazington
Executive producers: Liza Marshall, Hugo Heppell, Norman Merry. Directors of photography: Rob Hardy ("1974"), Igor Martinovic ("1980"), David Higgs ("1983)"
Production designers: Cristina Casali ("1974"), Tom Burton ("1980"), Alison Dominitz ("1983")
Music: Adrian Johnston ("1974"), Dickon Hinchcliffe ("1980"), Barrington Pheloung ("1983")
Costume designers: Natalie Ward ("1974"), Charlotte Walter ("1980"), Caroline Harris ("1983")
Editors: Andrew Hulme ("1974"), Jinx Godfrey ("1980"), Trevor Waite ("1983")
No Rating, 105 minutes ("1974"), 96 minutes ("1980"), 104 minutes ("1983")
Truth can be far more frightening than fiction, and IFC
Films is going to show us just how scary things can get via the release of the Red
Sure to be one of the cinematic events of the year, RED RIDING is a mesmerizing neo-noir epic based on factual events and adapted for the screen by Tony Grisoni (FEAR AND LOATHING IN LAS VEGAS) from David PeaceÂ´s electrifying series of novels revolving around the manhunt for the Yorkshire Ripper, a serial killer who terrorized northwest England in the 1970s and 80s. The three films are directed by three notable filmmakers Julian Jarrold (BRIDESHEAD REVISITED), James Marsh (MAN ON WIRE) and Anand Tucker (SHOPGIRL). Each boasts a stellar British cast that includes Andrew Garfield (THE IMAGINARIUM OF DOCTOR PARNASSUS), Sean Bean (LORD OF THE RINGS), Paddy Considine (DEAD MANÂ´S SHOES), Rebecca Hall (VICKY CRISTINA BARCELONA), and Peter Mullan (TRAINSPOTTING). The RED RIDING TRILOGY screened at the Telluride and New York film festivals and will open in New York on Friday, February 5 at the IFC Center, with a national release to follow. It will simultaneously be available on IFC FilmsÂ´ video on demand platform, available to over 50 million homes in all major markets.