Rose: A Love Story

Rose: A Love Story ★★★½

BFI London Film Festival 2020

Rose is a horror drama following Rose who, gripped by a violent, terrifying illness, lives in seclusion with her husband, but the arrival of a stranger shatters the fragile refuge they have built.

This is a great example of how subtlety is used to great effect in horror. Rose is a slow burner, it takes it’s time to tell it’s story and although it’s not exactly action packed, the story it’s telling is enough to keep you interested throughout. It’s an interesting take on a formula that has been done in many different ways before, some more tiresome than others, but here it works because at the heart of the film we have a love story that takes centre stage more often than not. This makes it all the more effective when the horror is bought into it because it’s unexpected. It helps that real life couple Sophie Rundle and Matt Stokoe are fantastic as lead characters Rose and Sam.

Their chemistry is so great to watch and makes their back and forth so natural, making you care about their characters. Olive Gray also deserves a mention as she is brilliant in her role as Amber, a character we don’t get to see until later on in the film but a character who is very likeable. That’s what works here, all of the main characters are likeable which helps draw you in even further into the story. The excellent cinematography also helps with this as it uses shadows and dark lighting to create an atmosphere that fits perfectly throughout. The soundtrack is very subtle but it didn’t need to be in your face or upbeat, it works for the exact type of tone the film is going for. 

Overall, Rose isn’t a scare per minute jump scare fest but it is a touching and captivating love story that incorporates horror in a very clever way that feels right. Great performances and great cinematography mix together to create an interesting take on the genre that uses minimalism to its advantage. 

🦌🦌🦌 & 1/2 / 🦌🦌🦌🦌🦌

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