- Director: Juan Carlos Medina
- Writer: Jane Goldman, Peter Ackroyd
- Main Cast: Bill Nighy, Olivia Cooke, Daniel Mays, Douglas Booth
‘London’s appetite for horror knows no bounds’
Detective Kildare (Bill Nighy) is investigating a series of grisly murders in late 19th Century London – a seemingly hopeless investigation – and becomes embroiled in the related investigation of a charming woman Lizzie (Olivia Cooke) who has been accused of poisoning her husband. As the case continues, the bodies pile up, the infamy of the suspects grow, and the story becomes all the more complex.
This seems to have received a rather mixed response from audiences, but I really enjoyed it! The story is multifaceted, switching between the Golem investigations and the story of Lizzie’s hard knock life, while also bringing to life the music halls of the period. The story intertwines the fictional Golem story with real figures – like Karl Marx and Dan Leno – and the harsh reality of Victorian London. Attitudes towards women and homosexuality in the period are also highlighted.
The cast is brilliant. Bill Nighy can do no wrong to my mind, and Daniel Mays is always an understated treat, but Olivia Cooke and Douglas Booth were revelations as well.
All that said, while this is an excellent story, how far it can be classified as a ‘horror’ is debatable. It is perhaps more a crime thriller, with some notably horrific murders. The same could be said, however, of Se7en and The Silence of the Lambs… So, horror-ific enough for this blog!