Director: Thomas Clay

Cast: Maxine Peake, Charles Dance, Freddie Fox, Tanya Reynolds, Peter McDonald, Zak Adams, Perry Fitzpatrick, Kenneth Collard

Synopsis: An isolated farm in Shropshire in 1657. This is the story of Fanny Lye, a woman who learns to transcend her oppressive marriage and discover a new world of possibility.

Run time: 1h 52m


Indie director Thomas Clay [The Great Ecstasy of Robert Carmichael (2005), Soi Cowboy (2008)] has directed, written the script and music for his long-awaited third film.

Fanny Lye Deliver’d is a harsh, horror tale of the English Revolution: a 17th-century historical drama which is multi-genre: a thriller about home invasion; folk horror; post-apocalyptic and dystopian drama. It is tough, disturbing watch as oppressed Fanny shakes off malevolent patriarchy after a violent awakening,

A mesmerising Maxine Peake is the dutiful wife and mother, repressed but capable, living under the control of her older Puritan husband John (Charles Dance).

John controls his wife and their young son Arthur (Zak Adams) in an occasionally brutish manner that he learned from his time in the military. Fanny – who it is suggested suffered atrocities during the Civil War – seems content with the protection granted by John at the cost of her independence.

Their Puritan lives are surprised and overturned by the arrival of Thomas (Freddie Fox) and Rebecca (Tanya Reynolds), a pair of young fugitives who have allegedly been robbed. By imitating a former soldier, Thomas earns the trust of John and shelters in their home, only to slowly overpower the family with his radical and anti-monarchist ideology.

But Thomas and Rebecca are being pursued by a ruthless High Sheriff (Peter McDonald) his deputy (Perry Fitzpatrick) and a Constable (Kenneth Collard).

Visceral yet thought-provoking, Fanny Lye’s deliverance is enhanced by creative cinematography from Giorgos Arvanitis and an atmospheric musical score, using ancient instruments, from Thomas Clay. ’s costume designs enhance the feel of Cromwellian England.

With nods to Hammer Horror films of the 1960’s, Kevin Brownlow’s Winstanley (1975) or Michael Reeves’s Witchfinder General (1968), Fanny Lye Deliver’d is an involving, gripping story, with a top class ensemble cast.


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images courtesy of Vertigo Releasing