Edge : film review
Carol Morley is making a name for herself with some fine idiosyncratic films. Her first, Alcohol Years, dealt with her wayward Mancunian youth running around the Hacienda and the mid to late eighties Manchester scene. There have been short films in-between and then Dreams Of Life the tragic, real life tale of Joyce Carol Vincent who, despite being a popular face on the London scene, was found dead in her flat three years after she died with no one noticing her decaying body.l
It’s this theme of isolation that she again turns to for her most recently released film, Edge. An isolation that harks back to the pre party Manchester of the early eighties, a time of Joy Division and stark musics documented by her older brother Paul. The pair of them dealing with the suicide of their father in their art and writing.
Edge, which was written and directed by Carol Morely, in that determined way that the truly talented possess, has that shadow over it. A sense of the space between people as several lost souls converge on an isolated hotel for a dark and sometimes comical look at the unlikely relationships that develop as the characters stories unfold.
There is the lost rock star who Carol wanted Jarvis Cocker to play, trying find his muse but connecting with Maxine Carr’s brilliantly played lead character- a woman uncertain of her role in a friend’s suicide. All the time these main characters are surrounded by a young girl who was assaulted, an innocent naive young man, an older dying woman and hotel staff with their own curious releases from their empty lives and the hotel itself, a crumbling, flock papered relic that is about to fall into theses- a victim of erosion, a fitting metaphor for the story itself and a star of the film in its own right.
It’s the tragedy the characters lives that gives the film it’s melancholy edge and also it’s dark humour that is resolved as the stories tie together . Z
An ambitious and starkly brilliant work, Edge is a very English film with a warmth in the empty lives that is captured perfectly and a real triumph for a hard working director working on a tight budget and it’s a must see example of the rude health of the British film industry away from the mainstream.