Release Date: 25 May 2015 | TBC | TBC/ DVD Directors: Justin Benson, Aaron Moorhead Cast: Lou Taylor Pucci, Nadia Hilker, Francesco Carnelutti, Jeremy Gardner, Nick Nevern The less you know about the plot of Spring, the better it’ll work for you. It’s a film of surprises, a slowly unravelling mystery that will lose much of its power if you know what’s coming. So let’s just say that it’s about a newly- orphaned twentysomething called Evan ( Lou Taylor Pucci) who decides to spend his inheritance on a trip to Italy. There, he falls in love with evolutionary science student Louise ( Nadia Hilker). And then something terrifying happens. Even that might be saying too much, because if you didn’t know this was a horror movie, you might not guess for quite a while. Carefully constructed to make the most of both its talented cast and its sunny Mediterranean setting, Spring makes Evan’s holiday look idyllic; the Italian tourism industry should have no complaints. Louise and Evan’s rapid intimacy is convincing, and though Pucci isn’t exactly the typical romantic lead, his big- eyed naivety helps sell the intensity of his character’s emotions. You could almsot believe you’re watching a Richard Linklater- style romance.
There are early hints that something more sinister is going on, though, including musical cues and rotting plants. Really, Spring belongs to a newish tradition of slow, introspective horror that includes Let The Right One In, Byzantium and Only Lovers Left Alive. It’s a talky two- hander that’s preoccupied with ideas of love and death, and it soon becomes clear that the Italian setting was chosen for more than just the weather. The looming spectre of Mount Vesuvius adds menace, while the art galleries the couple traipse around gain extra significance once the film shows its hand.
There’s sometimes a danger of Spring getting too obsessed with its own mythology and themes, but any heavy- handedness is compensated for by the script’s deadpan humour – which also makes the more fantastical moments easier to swallow. The ending could’ve done with a touch more ambiguity, and the film goes on too long by at least 15 minutes, but it’s still a journey worth tagging along for.
Extras: To be confirmed at time of going to press. Sarah Dobbs
The writer/ directors worked hard on Louise’s character. They wanted to make their mums and girlfriends proud of her.
A talky two- hander preoccupied with love and death
And then the bus hit them.