The Holding

The Holding
Dir: Susan Jacobson – UK, 2011

Sometimes our worst secrets can’t be buried. Sometimes, what we think is the right thing to do can be the most dangerous thing of all. Cassie Naylor has such a secret, the result of her maternal instincts to protect her daughters. But when the charming drifter, Aden, turns up, her terrible secret comes back to haunt her in the most horrifying and unexpected way. The Holding is a burning thriller about the destructive nature of secrets and the shocking lengths people will go to fight for what they value most in life.

The Holding is director Susan Jacobson’s first feature, but her short films have won critical acclaim worldwide. Most notable is  her short film One Hundredth of a Second, a poignant and moving story about a war photographer’s ultimate dilemma: take the photo or get involved. Co-produced by the UK Film Council, it won Best Film at the Manhattan Short Film Festival amongst many other awards and was screened in festivals worldwide.

Director’s statement: “I was totally sucked into this dark, broody world. It is a gripping, complex story that twists and turns, and I was so delighted to find a script with a strong female lead… If you talk about the film telling the story and entertaining, that’s what I want it to do. I want to take the audience on a thrilling journey. And then for me, as a filmmaker, my other goal is to have the opportunity to do it all again and better.”

A tight and skilful exercise in escalating threat, and it makes for a fun and exciting ride…  Despite its low budget, the film looks great throughout, making fine use of its isolated rural setting, and when the violence does come, the special effects are gruesome and convincing… The Holding is a great example of how a little craftsmanship can make all the difference, and the film is head and shoulders above most of its peers.

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