The Unkindness of Ravens – UK, 2016 – reviews

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The Unkindness of Ravens is a 2016 Scottish folk horror film directed by Lawrie Brewster from a screenplay by Sarah Daly.

The film stars Jamie Scott Gordon, who previously appeared in Brewster’s 2013 debut horror film Lord of Tears, as a troubled war veteran coming face to face with demonic ravens.

Commenting, Brewster has said the film “is an unsettling, visceral commentary on the mental turmoil that war leaves in its wake. It’s brutal, it’s relentless but it’s also thought-provoking. Expect to be traumatised.”

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While developing the film Daly and Brewster were inspired by figures from Norse and Celtic mythology such as the Valkyries and The Morrígan.

It was subsequently financed by a successful crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter and premiered in London at the Horror Channel FrightFest in August 2016.

Following the premiere, Kickstarter backers can look forward to the Special 3-Disc Edition of the film, set to include hours of behind the scenes action, interviews, deleted scenes, short films and more. This Special Edition is available to pre-order at: http://www.theunkindnessofravensmovie.com/

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Plot:

Andrew (Jamie Scott Gordon) is a homeless, troubled, war veteran that has been experiencing terrifying flashbacks of his time in the Army, flashbacks that contain visions of imposing raven-like creatures.

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These flashbacks are so intimidating that Andrew has developed a phobia of ravens. On the advice of a psychiatrist, he travels to a rural retreat in the Scottish Highlands to come to terms with his past and his fears. However. Andrew soon discovers that this move will bring him face to face with a supernatural force known only as the Raven Warriors…

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Reviews:

The Unkindness of Ravens is a raging fever-dream, wherein viewers are taken on a violent exploration of war and its aftermath. It will please fans of Gothic, atmospheric films that tell stories through actions and images as opposed to words alone. Most importantly, Ravens is a living life-line to anyone who thinks he or she is suffering PTSD in isolation: You are not alone.” Joshua Millican, Horrorfreak News

“It’s a demanding, complicated film which might well  require repeat viewings to parse fully – but this team are doing something interesting and unusual at a budget level where it would be easier to turn out a standard slasher-in-the-woods.” The Kim Newman Web Site

Cast and characters:

  • Jamie Scott Gordon as Andrew
  • Derek McIlhatton as Pte Mcilhatton
  • Dougie Clark as Lee
  • Amanda Gilliland as Angela
  • Mark Hunter as Pte Hunter
  • D.T. Wilson as Hostage
  • Ross Campbell as Rebel Soldier
  • Farooqi Muskwati as Rebel Commander
  • Raphael Zanders-McNeil as Rebel Soldier
  • Jamie Harrison-Grundy as Rebel Soldier
  • Benjamin Ferguson as Lost Soul
  • David Izatt as Lost Soul
  • Craig J. Seath as Lost Soul
  • Michael Brewster as ‘The Ravens Are Coming’ Lost Soul
  • David Ross as Lost Soul

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Filming locations:

Fife, Edinburgh, and Perthshire, Scotland

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