It’s probably safe to say that few of the critical notices British director Thomas Clay received for his staggeringly pretentious 2005 debut, ‘The Great Ecstasy of Robert Carmichael’, made their way on to his mother’s fridge. Yet this follow-up, seen in the context of that earlier abhorrence, is all the more intriguing and rewarding. Here is an artist who has gone back to the drawing board and pared down his act to deliver a stark and complex humanist message with technical brio and a broad knowledge of cinema, demonstrating real poise and originality. The story follows the monotonous existence of a corpulent Danish screenwriter living in Thailand with a diminutive local girl he has obviously lured in with the promise of money and security. Filmed in brittle monochrome, but segueing into colour for its dreamlike, Lynchian coda, it’s a film that addresses the destructive nature of libido, the potential for moral corruption, while also presenting a sensitive, micro-scale study of the ills of globalisation. Mr Clay: all is forgiven.