Chicken

Director: Joe Stephenson (2016)

Intense performances, an assured tone and a textured landscape shot with an appreciative eye are the strengths of this earnest and occasionally raw drama.

But as the characters struggle with poverty and abandonment, the script fails to free itself of the burden of its theatrical roots, failing to ignite the painstakingly constructed emotional bonfire.

Morgan Watkins and Scott Chambers play brothers with learning difficulties who live in a derelict caravan on farmland.

Polly is older, aggressive and more capable than Richard, he earns beer money as a casual labourer.

During Polly’s daily absence, the sweet natured Richard strikes up an unlikely friendship with spoilt middle class teenager Annabelle, played brightly by Yasmin Paige.

The deterioration of the boys challenging circumstances accelerates the decline of their relationship, unearthing a life changing family secret.

@ChrisHunneysett