Cert 18 On a tough Glaswegian housing estate where grim tower blocks dominate the skyline, Jackie (Kate Dickie), a CCTV operator, spends her day watching multi-screen footage of people going about their business from her multitude of cameras. All seems pretty normal until she spots a man from her past who we eventually learn was involved in the death of her husband and child. Jackie soon becomes obssessed with Clyde, played by Tony Curran, and begins to follow him with revenge in mind.
Red Road, the Cannes jury prize-winning thriller also won five awards at the Scottish Baftas, including best actress for Kate Dickie, best actor for Tony Curran, best Screenplay and best film. Andrea Arnold picked up awards for best director and best screenplay.
Red Road was Arnold's feature-length debut, having previously won an Oscar for her short film Wasp in 2003. She caused controversy when she forewent the traditional thank you speech, declaring the win as "the dog's bollocks".
Likened to Michael Haneke's style of atmoshpere and tension, Red Road builds gently. It feeds us information gradually which makes the film seem slow at times, but this only adds to the intensity. The wordless scenes where Jackie spies on Clyde make the atmosphere uncomfortable but at the same time compelling as Jackie's camera pans in on her pray. The extremely raw and graphic sex scene between Jackie and Clyde is not only disturbing for the seedy surrounding of Clyde's bedroom, but for the fact that Jackie actually seems to enjoy it.
The ending is slightly unsatisfying, but Red Road is still an intelligent thriller with gritty and realistic acting from the two lead performances - a fine debut.