Black Death [DVD] [2010]

Christopher Smith
United Kingdom released, PAL/Region 2 DVD: LANGUAGES: English ( Dolby Digital 5.1 ), English ( Dolby Digital Stereo ), English ( Subtitles ), ANAMORPHIC WIDESCREEN (2.35:1), SPECIAL FEATURES: Anamorphic Widescreen, Featurette, Interactive Menu, Scene Access, Trailer(s), SYNOPSIS: Slowly emerging as one of Britain's most interesting directors, Christopher Smith follows up his successes with Severance and Triangle by heading back to medieval England. Thus, in Black Death, we meet Sean Bean's Ulric, a knight who, in conjunction with a monk by the name of Osmund, is off on a mission. That quest? To find a necromancer. However, as you might expect, things don't go to plan at all. While the setting may be a change for Smith, his skill behind the camera matures further with Black Death. He's stretching a low budget here, but you'd be hard pushed to spot that for long periods of the film, as he evokes a dark, unpleasant period of history, and uses it as the basis for a very gritty film. Refusing to hide away from the violence and horrors of the time, it's engrossing, but not for the faint of heart. Smith's cast serve him well, too, with Sean Bean reliable in the lead role. He's joined by an ensemble that includes Black Book star Carice van Houten, Tim McInnerny and David Warner amongst others, and the ensemble pulls together terrifically well. The end result is a film that comfortably punches above its budgetary weight, and continues an interesting streak of films from its director. Yet whether you're familiar with his previous work or not, Black Death is very easy to recommend. ...Black Death (2010)


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