Prolific genre-hopping filmmaker Ben Wheatley (Sightseers) delivers yet another departure with A Field In England, a black-and-white psychedelic drama that promises the unexpected. Set during the English Civil War, the film follows a small group of deserters who are captured by an alchemist (Kill List‘s Michael Smiley) and forced to aid in his search for hidden treasure amongst a vast mushroom field. Chaos ensues as the group descends into heated arguments and paranoia, and it becomes apparent that the treasure might be something other than gold. Despite the inclusion of British comedians Julian Barratt (The Mighty Boosh) and Reece Shearsmith (The League of Gentlemen), there are no laughs on display here, and the film seems to aim for something akin to Alejandro Jodorowsky’s heady brand of surrealism. Wheatley has fast become England’s figurehead for provocative genre cinema, and his latest effort has aptly been endorsed by genre forebearer Nicolas Roeg (Don’t Look Now), who praises the film as “a wonderfully seductive piece of film-making.” A Field in England certainly looks to be a singular experience from one of the most exciting young filmmaking talents, and as always I can’t wait to see what he does next.
A Field in England arrives in UK cinemas, Film4 channel, VOD and DVD/Blu-ray on July 5. Check out the first trailer and poster below