The sheer presence of Alice Krige on screen will always draw me in such is the weight of performance that she is guaranteed to bring to the numerous roles she plays. In horror circles she came to light in 1981’s supernatural flick Ghost Story. My own personal journey into the horror celluloid history would cross paths with Krige when I first watched Sleepwalkers to fuel my passion for all things Stephen King and was struck by the gravity and sensual portrayal of matriarch villainess Mary Brady.
For her latest venture, She Will Krige plays beautifully to age as fading film star Veronica Ghent who goes to a healing retreat in Scotland to recover from a double mastectomy. The central theme of defeminisation runs rapidly throughout this feature with most male characters using their false privilege status to choose every avenue to assert power over the female gender. Veronica’s physical scarring is the most obvious feature. There is more lurking beneath the surface however with a mental trauma hinted at and disclosed later in the narrative.
Veronica is joined by Desi (Kota Eberhardt) who also falls prey to male assertiveness when she is hit on at a bar, and then things turn south fast when they try to force themselves upon her.
A bond is formed between Veronica and Desi that is cemented by the land in which they have come to; once a place where women were burnt as witches but through which a power is harboured by those who will vengeance.
Director Charlotte Colbert makes a worthy entry for her first foray into feature length filmmaking. With weighty performances from Krige, Eberhardt, and veteran screen actors Malcolm McDowell and Rupert Everett, she has crafted a mystical film that captures an eerie and haunting presence. This is further enhanced by Cinematographer Jamie Ramsay’s visual eye (one that has him fast rising up through the ranks behind the camera with See How They Run and Strangers) who manages to build a visceral feeling to support the characters hardship and turmoil with each frame shot.
She Will may be a slow burn, but there is enough charisma here to fuel the intrigue to a well developed narrative to fan the flames of a theme that warrants more attention.`
- Saul Muerte
She Will is currently streaming on Shudder ANZ.