Fridtjof Ryder's debut feature is a slow-burning, intimitately drawn rural thriller featuring a haunting performance from Rory Alexander as an unnamed man. He has just been released from residential treatment for mental illness and seems to be haunted by an incident when his mother left him as a child. He re-enters life living with "Dunleavy" (Mark Rylance) who seems to be a father figure who knew his mum, but not actually his dad. As much as Dunelavy wants to tether the protagonist to the real world, his slow drip of revelations makes for increasing tension and mystery cultimating in a stunning piece of acting with Rylance' face captured, claustrophoblically filling the screen. This is just one example of really bold and assured directorial choices from Ryder, not limited to but including stunning landscape photography, the willingness to create haunting Lynchian visuals, and a truly creepy audio track. I cannot wait to see what Ryder and Alexander do next. I haven't been this excited by a British directorial debut since Ben Wheatley.
INLAND received its world premiere at the BFI London Film Festival 2022. It has a running time of 82 minutes.
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