KEEPING ROSY (2014)
Directed by Steve Reeves
After her workmate is given a major promotion over her, Charlotte’s life couldn’t get any worse, or so she thinks. Upon returning home to her trendy London skyscraper flat, Charlotte finds her Eastern-European cleaner Mykala smoking whilst doing the hoovering, something which Charlotte forbids anyone doing inside her apartment. A heated, physical argument breaks out between the two women, which leaves Mykala gravely injured, her health declining by the second. After slipping away, Charlotte panics and must decide which course of action to do to keep this terrible accident a secret.
KEEPING ROSY is an incredibly tense thriller from director and co-writer Steve Reeves and co-writer Mike Oughton. The majority of the story plays out within the confines of Charlotte’s highrise apartment building, with the action moving outside when the story dictates it to do so. This makes the viewer very accustomed to Charlotte’s way of life. The plot feels rather real and shows how one particular moment fueled by stress can have dreadful consequences.
The role of Charlotte is played by one of Britain’s finest actresses, Maxine Peake, who’s television credentials range from Shameless to See No Evil, in which Maxine played Moors murderer, Myra Hindley. In Keeping Rosy, Maxine expertly plays a Northern lass who’s made a name for herself down south as a shrewd business woman. More focused on her career than anything else, her whole world falls apart when she finds out about being shafted at work. For someones who’s career is everything, coupled with the luxuries it brings such as the posh car and flat, this destroys Charlotte. Charlotte is a very hard person to like when the viewer first meets her, her steely career-driven persona masking her humanity. Over the course of the film, Charlotte is broken down and this is when we see a glimmer of emotion through the cracks of the former businesswoman. The film also features gripping performances from The Inbetweeners‘ Blake Harrison and The Street‘s Christine Bottomley.
Keeping Rosy keeps viewers on their toes at all times, with shocking twists and turns around each and every corner. This sets a fast, unrelenting pace to the film that doesn’t stop to come up for air. This approach works especially well for this style of movie, the plot hard-hitting and engaging even the most casual of film fans. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a film this dramatic using such few locations, those of which emphasise the isolation and panic through the events that have taken place, as the world around Charlotte, which she knew, crumbles.
Screenings of Keeping Rosy are being held at 55 Portland Street in Manchester, as part of their immersive pop-up cinema experience. I had the great fortune of attending the premiere, complete with red carpet. We were led to the top floor via elevator, where the pop-up cinema experience was being held. A screen and projector sat at one end of the office room, with around 50 seats upon partially staggered platforms in front. Each viewer was given a pair of headphones to listen to the movie through as well as an iPad to launch the Keeping Rosy app before the film started, so that the viewer could adjust the volume of the movie to their liking. This sort of viewing experience was a first for me, but I found it quite an enjoyable one, especially as each person prefers a different audio volume to the next person.
The location of the pop-up cinema was perfect. 55 Portland Street is an 11 stories high office block, and with the movie showing on the top floor, we had the great experience of viewing the Manchester skyline. I couldn’t resist taking a few snaps and it seemed to equally captivate the rest of the guests at the screening.
As I mentioned, the Keeping Rosy pop-up cinema is an immersive experience. Those behind the event have cleverly interwoven the experience with the film, that you won’t even realise what you’ve experienced until you watch the movie. That’s all I’m prepared to say, as I don’t want to ruin the amazing experience for anyone else. What I can say though, is that you should definitely attend the Manchester screening of Keeping Rosy if you are able to, as the London run will be in cinemas, and the pop-up cinema in Manchester is definitely one to experience, especially for fans of film. As a Greater Manchester resident, I feel so fortunate that we’ve been graced by the screening, as so often these types of events are only held in the South.
The Keeping Rosy pop-up cinema experience runs from 6th June until the 6th July 2014 at 55 Portland Street. Visit the Keeping Rosy website for more info and to purchase tickets.
A tense, heart-pumping thriller, Keeping Rosy keeps on shocking even after the credits roll. If this is the first feature creation of writer/director Steve Reeves and co-writer Mike Oughton, I cannot wait to see what else is up their sleeves.