review

the keeping room

Director: Daniel Barber

Starring: Brit Marling, Hailee Steinfeld & Sam Worthington

Released: 17th October 2016

The Keeping Room finds British director Daniel Barber attempting a depiction of feminism during the American Civil War. Barber’s last film, Harry Brown, found Michael Caine taking the law into his own hands on a beleaguered London council estate; The Keeping Room similarly touches on notions of territory, proprietorship and self-defense.

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While their father and brother are away fighting, sisters Augusta (Brit Marling) and Louise (Hailee Steinfeld) tend their homestead alongside Mad (Muna Otaru), the family slave. Although they do their best to keep to themselves in these perilous times, they inadvertently come into conflict with two Union soldiers – Moses (Sam Worthington) and Henry (Kyle Soller) – and in that respect the film begins to resemble a cross between Harry Brown, Straw Dogs and The Beguiled, as the three women are besieged by outside forces.

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