An adaptation of Lawrence Osborne’s tale of possible redemption co-starring Doctor Who’s Matt Smith is now in cinemas
The Forgiven is the latest film from John Michael McDonagh, writer/director of The Guard and Calvary. It’s based on the best-selling novel from Lawrence Osborne, and follows the tragedy that strikes at a weekend for the wealthy and entitled at a remote Moroccan retreat of former Doctor Who Matt Smith’s hedonistic billionaire Richard Galloway. Ralph Fiennes and Jessica Chastain star as two of the guests, married couple David and Jo Henninger, who are involved in a car accident en route to the epic party. But David is an alcoholic who had been drinking before the incident where he ran over a local teenager.
Richard agrees to help cover up the crime but the boy’s father soon comes calling. David reluctantly agrees to attend the funeral, setting him on a path to possible redemption. Meanwhile, Jo stays behind with Richard and the other guests to lose herself in continuing their weekend of debauchery.
The Forgiven, originally planned for release last year, is one of a number of current projects for Smith. He plays a lead role as Prince Daemon in Game of Thrones: House of the Dragon on HBO Max/Sky Atlantic. He also stars in upcoming supernatural thriller film Starve Acre, currently in post-production. He’ll play another Richard, this time a loving father and husband in rural 1970s England. And he’ll appear alongside Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’s Morfydd Clark as his wife Juliette. The couple become concerned by their son’s increasingly disturbing and violent behaviour. Meanwhile, Richard becomes obsessed with the local folk horror tale of ‘Grey Jack’ and the gnarled. Could Grey Jack, the foreboding ‘hanging tree’ on their land, and their son’s traumas be connected?
Speeding through the Moroccan desert to attend an old friend’s lavish weekend party, wealthy Londoners David and Jo Henninger (Ralph Fiennes and Jessica Chastain) are involved in a tragic accident with a local teenage boy. Arriving late at the grand villa with the debauched party raging, the couple attempts to cover up the incident with the collusion of the local police. But when the boy’s father arrives seeking justice, the stage is set for a tension-filled culture clash in which David and Jo must come to terms with their fateful act and its shattering consequences.
The Forgiven can be found at cinemas across the UK now.