A movie heavily influenced by Lewis Carroll’s story of Alice – it’s something that has been done many times before but Red Kingdom Rising stands away from such other movies. The film centres around a young woman who revisits her past and relives the traumatic childhood she has tried to forget.
Red Kingdom Rising is the first feature to come from director Navin Dev. Dev also takes on the role of writer and producer – no easy task for someone creating their first feature film. In it he creates a dark and twisted reality for the lead character (Emily Stride) in which she must overcome her past to awake from the nightmare. As the film progresses the audience learns of her terrible past and the abuse she suffered. This is unsettling for the audience but echoes the reality of such issues. The themes of religion are also thrown into the mix. This again is a bit of a controversial move as child abuse is often linked to some religious groups.
The young woman is played brilliantly by upcoming actress Emily Stride. Stride provides a strong performance even though you can see she is still new to acting on screen. She appears in almost every scene and each scene is well shot and well produced. Scenes lacking dialogue and action made use of the atmospheric sounds that appear in the scene giving them a creepy and sinister feel which is the film’s main theme. The sets and locations used are visually interesting, helping to create a great deal of intrigue and mystery for the audience.
Overall this movie is a strong first feature which looks at bold issues such as child abuse and religion. It is produced brilliantly on a small budget by a first timer showing that if a film maker is passionate enough they can produce something good.