February aka The Blackcoat’s Daughter
Director: Osgood Perkins
Writer: Osgood Perkins
Cast: Emma Roberts, Kiernan Shipka, Lauren Holly, Lucy Boynton, James Remar, Peter J. Gray, Emma Holzer
Part of: /slash Filmfestival
Seen on: 30.4.2016
[Review by cornholio.]
Kat (Kiernan Shipka) and Rose (Lucy Boynton) are both at the same boarding school, waiting for winter break. Other than that, they don’t have much in common. Kat is shy and withdrawn, desperately waiting for her parents to pick her up, while Rose told her parents to pick her up a day later so she would have unsupervised time to get an abortion. When Kat’s parents don’t show up and the two are left alone at school – although something else seems to be with them.
Meanwhile Joan (Emma Roberts) is hitchhiking towards the school. She gets a ride from Bill (James Remar) and his wife Linda (Lauren Holly) who have their own demons to fight.
February was a mixed bag of beans. The acting was fantastic and I really loved some of the very fresh ideas. But after an atmospheric beginning, the film peters out and in the end, it failed to convince me.
So far, Emma Roberts hasn’t exactly made me gasp with her acting. But in February she wasn’t bad at all, though she admittedly paled next to Kiernan Shipka who managed to steal the film away. Part of that is certainly due to her ethereal face with those huge eyes that seem almost unreal, but a good face alone doesn’t make a good show and Shipka certainly knows how to deliver in the acting department as well.
Storywise some things were very obvious [SPOILER] like that Joan was an older Kat [/SPOILER] while I was quite taken with the central idea regarding the possession in this film that I hadn’t seen done that way before: [SPOILER] that Kat appreciated being possessed because it meant having company and that she tried so very hard to be possessed once more because she was so incredibly lonely. [/SPOILER] It was an interesting, heartbreaking idea which is why it was so disappointing that it was a final twist that wasn’t actually explored in the film.
The film builds slowly and in the beginning that didn’t bother me at all. But when it never actually picked up its pace, it started to lose its momentum and I started to become impatient for things to happen. Particularly because I had guessed the first twist and wanted to story to reveal it, so that we could cover new ground.
But it didn’t happen and so my interest in and satisfaction with the movie started to fade. In the end I just wasn’t particularly excited about it. For the film of a first time director it shows a lot of promise though, so let’s see what Perkins comes up with next.
Summarizing: It’s okay.