Young French-Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan established himself as the enfant terrible of international queer cinema with ‘I Killed My Mother’, ‘Heartbeats’ and ‘Laurence Anyways’ – swooningly stylish features about identity, desire and the importance of being fierce. Based on the play by Michel Marc Bouchard, ‘Tom at the Farm’ strikes a different note: in place of chic urban Quebec, we get stark countryside; rather than strained friendship and romance, we get pulse-raising Hitchcockian suspense drama. Tom (Dolan himself) leaves the city to attend the funeral of his partner, who wasn’t out as gay to his family. And what a family: brother Francis (Pierre-Yves Cardinal) is a surly, brooding rooster; mother Agathe (Lise Roy) tilts between coldness and fragility; they don’t talk about dad. As Tom’s stay on their isolated farm drags out, Dolan judiciously drip-feeds both the reasons his lover wanted to get out of this place and, more disconcertingly, the violent and erotic undertows that keep Tom in its orbit. It’s taut, creepy, compelling and sexy. And, apart from the location, it’s very much a Dolan film, focused on people testing the limits of their love for each other – and themselves.