Elizabeth Harvest [Review]

From a fairytale wedding to a ethical nightmare, this stylish sci-fi number gets real chilly.

Elizabeth Harvest

The stick-thin Abbey Lee is Elizabeth. Our titular princess that gets swept up into a palatial retreat in the mountains by her new husband Henry (Ciaran Hinds). He lavishes her with an all-access credit to both his bank and home, citing his incredible love for her. And yet the waif ponders on the relationship, and the mystery behind the one room in the house she cannot enter. So of course – she must.

What she discovers is not only a shock to her system, but it sends ripples across the household in a chain-reaction series of events, including the only two keepers, Claire (Carla Gugino) and Oliver (Matthew Beard). What transpires is hairpin bend of a plot, that shifts gear from languid creepiness to a bizarre array of horrors that never stop coming.

This stylish number is reminiscent of Neon Demon, with their otherworldly beauties and dark underlying philosophies. It can so easily become indulgent or pompous, but director and writer Sebastian Gutierrez drives the number with an admirable quiet confidence. The art direction and camera are partners-in-crime, delivering Instagrammable framing and looks from shot to shot. The costume design is really a runway heaven, sporting killer looks at every turn on Lee’s fragile frame.

Elizabeth Harvest has only a few characters, but the story works wonderfully in teasing out their diabolical agendas. Each cast holds their own brilliantly, crumbling at the edges, as they descend from stoic to insane. And while all that is unravelling into a beautiful twisted tapestry, you quiver with horror at the proceedings, as the picture reveals itself in all its dark glory.

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