Make Up ★★★★

“A disfigured atrocity,J-j-jutting out of place,Jutting out of place,Make up to break up, Make up to break up.”


Before watching the interesting The Roads Not Taken (2020-also reviewed) I originally planned for this to be the first title I would see at the Home cinema in Manchester,but sadly no suitable show time ever popped up. Very curious about seeing the film,I finally got set for a make-up free viewing.

View on the film:

Descending on the Cornwall caravan site like a thick fog, composer Ben Salisbury (who was also the co-composer on Ex Machina (2014-also reviewed)) ushers in waves of Post-Rock reverberations across Ruth’s self-discoveries.

Closely working with Salisbury, sound designer Ania Przygoda weaves a masterfully textured soundtrack, which draws in a eerie atmosphere of waves hitting against the rocks,creaking floors and a low-rumbling hum that haunts Ruth from every direction she takes.

Shaky on her feet as she starts to question reality, Molly Windsor gives a great performance as Ruth, thanks to Windsor threading a curiosity in Ruth to get closer to the strange sights she sees round the site, with an enticing hazy expressiveness as possible hallucinations of dreams/nightmares awash over Ruth as she comes of age.

From when Ruth takes her first steps into the caravan site, feature film debuting writer/director Claire Oakley (whose dad very good weather special effects,on a production where the cast/crew spent 5 weeks living on the open caravan site) & cinematographer Nick Cooke paint an extremely peculiar dream-logic atmosphere, where the camera hangs in the air just that bit too long,wonderfully taking everything off-centre into a surreal Horror.

Oakley and Cooke turn the real location into a chilly site,with ghostly lights flicking off polythene-covered caravans, and a red headed woman (whose face is obscured from being seen) appear in the distant in front of Ruth,like a ghostly mirage.

Opening Ruth’s self-discovery to have a emphasis on atmosphere,rather than plot, Oakley knots the loose plot threads together into a hypnotic dream-logic, mood piece,via Oakley and editor Sacha Szwarc splintering Ruth’s mind-set with jarring,fragmented cuts on what might be Ruth’s coming of age,with on-edge slices of surrealist Horror in diced bright red nails, startling blasts of coloured rain, and wigs hanging high made out of human hair,as Ruth applies her make up.