THE ONES BELOW
Film Review by Fiore
In today’s world, the feminist agenda praises abortion, and elevates it to sacramental status. Statistically, more babies have been killed through abortion than people in all the world wars combined. With these realities, it is difficult to fathom a couple willing to kill to have a child; but that is the premise behind THE ONES BELOW. It’s a particularly captivating thriller from the pen, and under the directorship of David Farr.
Kate and Justin are expecting their first child. It’s taken seven years of marriage before the decision was made, mainly due to Kate’s reluctance to be a mother. New neighbors move in the apartment below, and they, too, are having a child. Jon and Theresa are a mixed couple; he is British and she is German, but he spent a good portion of his life in China, following their beliefs and traditions. This brings an air of mystery to the couple which Kate finds intriguing.
During their first getting-to-know-you encounter, Theresa has an accident, falls down the stairs and loses her baby. Accusations fly and animosities build between the couples until an amiable peace is achieved – or so it seems.
THE ONES BELOW stars David Morrisey as Jon. He is enigmatic as a man driven to have an heir and believing in a transition, water based form of justice. Laura Birn plays his wife Theresa, whose appearance shifts from elegant to demonic, depending on the scene. Clemence Possy is Kate, a woman who’s first child is not her biggest fear. She deals with a dysfunctional mother, a dead brother and an estranged father. Justin, her husband, played by Stephen Campbell Moore (yes, they have the dreaded three named people in the UK as well) appears to be Kate’s only anchor in an otherwise chaotic world.
1. The discovery of the nursery
2. The accident
3. The revelation
Farr crafts an evenly paced thriller with the help of Editor Chris Wright. While most British films tend to draw out in the second act, and this one follows the trend, there is a clever time-shift edit for the conclusion that more than compensates. Director of Photography Ed Rutherford shoots THE ONES BELOW in much the same fashion as the thrillers of Hollywood's Golden Era; shifting from long to medium shots, with the occasional cant camera angle.
While the film’s climax is predictable, one is never quite sure how it will unfold until the final reel. It makes THE ONES BELOW well worth a look.
THE GRADE FOR THE ONES BELOW = B