This Filthy Earth
<strong>Rating: </strong>4/5Rate this
Time Out saysThe follow-up to Kötting's road movie/autobiographical essay Gallivant recounts a fictional tale of familial and social strife inspired by Zola's La Terre. Sisters Francine (Palmer) and Kath (Randall) work the rundown farm left them by their parents. Though neighbour Buto (Attwooll) sired Kath's Emma, he pays mother and child no mind till he realises marriage might pay property dividends, even as he openly lusts after Francine. Meanwhile, she has her eyes on farmhand Lek, an Eastern European viewed with suspicion and contempt by the superstitious locals. As the squabbles over land, bodies and blood spiral towards stormy conflict, Kötting uses cutting, variegated digital visuals and art direction to plunge us into a stagnant, oddly timeless world of earthy physicality. Wit there certainly is, alongside an insistent poeticism that highlights the carnal and primeval. Paradoxically, the decay feels as if it's been there forever or, if you're feeling ungenerous, as if it's just a dramatic device run amok. Uneven, even a little dotty perhaps, but it's robust, unrestrained and mercifully worlds away from the slicker British fare of recent years.