Susan (Olivia Colman) and Chris Edwards (David Thewlis) is being deployed in France. They are a curious, somewhat feisty middle-aged couple, wearing old coats and sensible shoes. Lack of cash. Chris’ hesitant French didn’t help much in job interviews. But despite their despair, they still have each other, the love they show in unusual ways. “I’d like a croissant in the barrel for you,” Susan said. She still has her favorite movies, especially Western ones, somewhere to hide when it all gets too much. But the pressure is on, and her love of old Hollywood memorabilia is burning through their reserve cash. They cannot run forever. Are they murderers? They don’t seem to be sure of themselves.
On returning to the UK, however, questions are mounting. After being picked up by Chris’ stepmother, Tabitha Edwards, Nottingham police were dispatched to a house in the suburbs, where they discovered two bodies buried in the back garden. The condition of the corpses suggests that they were dead around the time Susan’s parents, Patricia and William Wycherley, went missing in 1998. With nowhere to go, perhaps it was time for Chris and Susan to return home and face the music. Chris said: “I think the more we run, the more guilty we seem.
Landscapers written by Ed Sinclair, an actor and writer who is married to Colman. It is based on a true story. In June 2014, real-life Chris and Susan were jailed for life for murdering Susan’s parents and robbing them of £300,000 of their property. If not clever, this could be a classic true-crime retelling of a gritty episode, but this HBO and Sky quartet has loftier ambitions. If Sinclair’s bold concept and script elevates it above an average crime movie, the direction, by Will Sharpe, is what makes Landscapers Can not forget. This is a murder mystery that is also a comedy, a love story, a meditation on creative work, and somehow despite the subject matter is a tribute to the eccentricity of the person. Brother.
Sharpe is establishing himself as a sort of Swiss Army service man, able to take advantage of every aspect of filmmaking. He won the Bafta Award for Best Supporting Actor for his performance in Giri / Haji, and a best-scripted comedy Bafta for The flowers, the series he wrote and co-starred – again with Colman, about a depressed family. Adults are paying attention. His next director feature is The Electric Life of Louis Wain, starring Benedict Cumberbatch, Claire Foy, and Andrea Riseborough.
Here, as in The flowers, you get the feeling that every frame has been created with attention to detail. Landscapers is an experiment in form and tone, going monochrome for romantic glances, breaking down the fourth wall for introductory scenes, jumping through time and space, showing us some of the mechanics of film. But it’s not just the flourishes. The interior is richly textured in rococo style, not a single painting or lighting or jewelry is missing. Even a train ride through the train station becomes eerie. You’re left with only a tiny bit of worry about what Wes Anderson’s work might look like if he’d spent his entire childhood watching. Cash in the attic.
Colman and Thewlis turned Susan and Chris into Barbour-style Bonnie and Clyde, entwined to the end. They get more screen time and anchor the moments out there more in believable, patient characters. Her devotion turned to lack; His desire to protect her blinded him to their dire situation. We feel sorry for both of you, which is no small thing when you recall the macabre events in real life. But there are plenty of other strong performances, especially Kate O’Flynn as DC Emma Lancing, one half of the sour, nimble cop duo with DC Paul Wilkie (Samuel Anderson). It may be based on real events but Landscapers really about lies. The criminals lied to the police to stay free for another day; artists lie in the hope of uncovering some hidden truth; lies we tell the people we love in hopes of keeping them happy, or maybe, someday, understanding them.
‘Landscapers’ premieres on Sky Atlantic and NOW on Tuesday, December 7, 2021
https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/reviews/landscapers-review-olivia-colman-b1971829.html Landscapers review: Olivia Colman is brilliant as a real-life killer