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Bella in the Wych Elm

UK 2017
produced by
Thomas Lee Rutter for Carnie Features
directed by Thomas Lee Rutter
starring 'Tatty' Dave Jones (narration), Sarah L. Page, Lee Mark Jones, James Underwood, Traci Templer, Matias Barnes, Evan Mancrief, Martin Pugh, Isaac Trevallion, James Taylor, Jim Heal, Barry Anscomb-Moon, Peter Grail, Richard Quarterman, Ria Parfitt (voice)
written by Thomas Lee Rutter, music by Jon Joseph Murray

short, documentary

review by
Mike Haberfelner

In 1943, a quartet of boys found a woman's decomposed corpse in a wych elm in Hagley Wood, Worcestershire, England, when actually hunting birds' nests. At first, they were hesitant to report their finding to anybody, but eventually, one of the boys' parents did report it to the police. The body was examined, but apart from determining it must have been a woman between 20 and 45, no real facts could be established - and since in 1943, the UK was at war with Germany, there were of course much more pressing matters.

Thing is, the following year, graffiti started showing up saying "Who put Bella in the Wych Elm" started showing up, relating to the incident, and while it's not at all clear who was responsible for those either, the whole story moved into the realm of legends, and several theories popped up, involving German spies, witches, gypsies, prostitutes and whatever else folklore could pretty much come up with ...

 

Now basically, Bella in the Wych Elm is a documentary ... it just doesn't feel like one - which I mean in the best possible way: On one hand of course, yes, the film provides with all the relevant information on the case as I know it, on the other hand though, the whole thing is filmed in a style aesthetically reminiscent of silent movies (that goes beyond featuring no on-screen sound and being in black and white), with not giving too much of a hoot about authenticity and instead telling the story in a very atmospheric, at times phantasmagorical way that suits the folklore roots of the story very well - and the outcome is quite simply a very fascinating piece of movie!

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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Thanks for watching !!!

 

 

On the same day
a Burglar wants to kill you
and your Ex wants
to make up ...
... and for the life of it,
you can't decide
WHICH IS WORSE!!!

 

A Killer Conversation

produced by and starring
Melanie Denholme
directed by
David V.G. Davies
written by
Michael Haberfelner
starring
Ryan Hunter and
Rudy Barrow

out now on DVD

 

 

Stell Dir vor, Deine Lieblingsseifenoper birgt eine tiefere Wahrheit ...
... und stell Dir vor, der Penner von der U-Bahnstation hat doch recht ...
... und dann triffst Du auch noch die Frau Deiner (feuchten) Träume ...

 

Und an diesem Tag geht natürlich wieder einmal die Welt unter!!!

 

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