DIRECTOR f WRITER Leigh Dovey STARS Michael Dacre; Steve Garry; Angus Kennedy DVD 11 March
Adeptly balancing a mix of subgenre, The Fallow Field is a promising debut from writer-director Leigh Dovey. While the premise at heart may not be original, what is here feels fresh for its twist on it. The initial hook — our protagonist awakes at dawn in a country field with no recollection of where he has been for the past seven days, and not for the first time — is at first threatened by a kitchen-sink drama feel, however once Dovey has finished splitting our sympathies with the character, a rather clever screenplay metes out the story little by little, effectively turning it on its head multiple times to not lose momentum.
The Fallow Field is that rarest of films, one that genuinely keeps you guessing to culminate in some palpable tension come the third act; all the more impressive for Dovey’s lack of experience. A micro budget inevitably detracts a little, some poor sound making it difficult to understand dialogue at points, however the lack of funds also enhances the story, creating a reliance on protagonist-antagonist interaction, the second act essentially a two-hander. This is intelligent storytelling.