The impressive debut of British director Michael Pearce is a story about the dark side of human nature. Moll (a brilliant Jessie Buckley) is the black sheep of a well-to-do English family. An unfortunate incident she was involved in has resulted in her being tutored at home by her controlling mother. Moll flees the posh garden party organized for her birthday and in the course of a night full of wild drinking and dancing she meets Pascal, a mysterious hunter. Before long she decides to move in with him. But when a local teenage girl goes missing under suspicious circumstances, kicking off a series of killings, Moll has to pick a side. Does she belong back in the complacent reality where she was stuck or in the dangerous and unpredictable world of wild instincts and desire? Pearce creates a rich, dense atmosphere in this eerie, beautifully shot thriller, taking full advantage of the film’s island setting and its unique landscape, but above all the ambivalence and mystery of the main characters’motivations.
Michael’s debut feature, Beast, was funded by BFI and Film 4 and has will have its world premiere at the 2017 Toronto Film Festival Platform programme. In 2014 Michael was selected to be part of the Guiding Lights scheme and was mentored by James Marsh. In 2013 he made his first TV drama, Henry, through Channel Four’s Coming Up scheme and made the short, Keeping Up with the Jeneses, through the BFI’s 2012 Shorts Scheme, the film was nominated at the 2014 BAFTA’s and BIFA’S. In 2011 Michael was one of Screen International’s UK Stars of Tomorrow and his feature script for Beast was selected to be developed through the 2011 TorinoFilmLab Script&Pitch Workshops and was then selected to be part of 2012 FrameWork programme. Previous to that Michael’s short film, Rite, was nominated at the 2011 BAFTA’s and BIFA’s, played at over 40 international film festivals. Michael studied Film Directing at the National Film Television School, his graduation film Madrugada, won The Royal Television Society Award for Best Short Film.
2008 Madrugada (short)
2011 Rite (short)
2012 Keeping Up with the Joneses (short)
2013 Henry (TV Series)
2017 Pod ciemnymi gwiazdami / Beast