Crowdfunding successes: Communion ★★★

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Funded by a successful crowdfunding campaign, Greg Hall raised over £10,000 for his fourth feature film, ‘Communion’, which will receive it’s UK premiere at the Portabello Pop Up Cinema on the 1st of August.

The film tells the story of troubled Priest Father Clemence (Paul Marlon), who is searching for retribution and Maria (Ana Gonzalez Bello), a tomboy punk fleeing her home in Mexico City. Their chance meeting takes them on a journey of self discovery.

From the outset, the film leaves the viewer asking many questions, the main one being why Father Clemence is so troubled. Paul Marlon puts in a fantastic performance as the seriously unstable priest, who has an uncontrollable urge for alcohol, and on occasion, becomes seriously violence. But what has caused the priest to behave like this? Why is he so vehemently angry and troubled? The plot ticks along at a steady pace, but does get a bit frustrating at times, not knowing what is causing the main character to act in the extreme way that he does. The audience in any film like to feel a sort of bond with the lead character, but we are just left feeling we don’t really know Clemence, and almost don’t want to towards the end, as he starts to become more and more unstable.

However, if you were in any doubt, the last five minutes make everything absolutely crystal clear. Suddenly the audience can understand everything the priest has gone through, and they can feel total empathy for him, instantly piecing together some of the micro plots and flashes that occur throughout the film.

Hall has done a great job of bringing this film to life, and Paul Marlon gives a real masterclass in acting. There are even some flashes of genius in the script which will have you totally engrossed (in particular, look out for the story of the boy and the tree). At times the film can be a little slow, but be patient for the ending, which successfully ties up all the loose ends in one foul swoop.

Watch the trailer here:

Christian started writing film reviews at school for a local paper. Since then he has written for BBC Radio 4's Newsjack and The London Film Review. He also writes and presents a comedy show on AbingdonXtra, an Oxfordshire based radio station.