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God’s Own Country

Saturday, April 15, 2017
5:00 p.m.
Roxie Theater


Monday, April 17, 2017
8:30 p.m.
Alamo Drafthouse New Mission

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Filmed on the Yorkshire hillside where he grew up, Francis Lee's debut feature tells the rich and sexy story of John Saxby, a hard-drinking lad who keeps his emotions in check until an irrepressible Romanian immigrant comes to help out on the family farm. John has some decent reasons for preferring the pub to life at home–his dad has had a stroke and can't do hard labor, his grandmother is tough as nails, and the farm work that awaits him daily delivers only drudgery. He's also hiding an attraction for men that only the bottle or emotionless sex can assuage. When Gheorghe arrives, there's some initial friction, but writer/director Lee attentively demonstrates how John's initial feelings, of rivalry and protecting the nest, shift. Lee also expertly depicts the challenges of animal husbandry—one indelible scene shows how to make a ewe take care of the runt of her litter. But this is no bucolic portrait of farm life—God's Own Country, which won Sundance's World Dramatic Prize for Directing, is full of passion and fiery tempers and a longing for love that just might be possible in stark but scenic rural Yorkshire. It’s impossible to imagine that anyone could do better than Josh O'Connor and Alec Secareanu in the lead roles. —Rod Armstrong

Filmmaker Bio(s)

Francis Lee grew up in Yorkshire, England, and began his career in film and theater as an actor before directing his first short film, Bantam, in 2009. Several acclaimed shorts followed, and God's Own Country is his first feature. About the film's setting he says, "[It] was critically important to me to communicate what this very specific landscape not only looks like but how it feels, sounds, tastes, smells … The daily struggle with the animals that leaves very little time or energy to investigate emotion or relationships."
Film Details
  • Country(ies): UK
  • Language(s): English
  • Year: 2017
  • Running time: 105
  • Director(s): Francis Lee
  • Producer(s): Manon Ardisson, Jack Tarling
  • Writer(s): Francis Lee
  • Cinematographer(s): Joshua James Richards
  • Editor(s): Chris Wyatt
  • With: Josh O’Connor, Alec Secareanu, Ian Hart

Print Source:
Samuel Goldwyn