Archive of films A Field in England / A Field in England

United Kingdom
2013, 90 min

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Year: 2013

England, civil war. A group of men flee from a raging battle but they are captured and forced to take part in a hunt for treasure supposedly buried somewhere in a field. But before they start digging, they gobble up some strange-looking mushrooms and then everything goes pear-shaped. A beguiling piece with touches of mystery and farce.


Even history can be something of an adventure. You wouldn’t want to cross paths with the alchemist O’Neil (Michael Smiley) under any circumstances, especially not when you’re fleeing the battlefield. The English Civil War is raging, and the dark age, when the laws of the universe mean nothing to anyone and the idea of rotating planets is tantamount to heresy, throws up its fair share of strong language. In this story, skirmishes aren’t confined to the battlefield, either. Searching for hidden treasure, a small group of men are assisted by some peculiar mushrooms which shift everything to somewhat unforeseen realms. The film is set in a magical yet chaotic era and, even in its feistily stylised form employing both earthy and exalted dialogue, it manages to crank up an extraordinary tension. This edge is also apparent given the fact that, as a seductively constructed, eloquently scored black-and-white piece, it brings to light the period’s barbarity and squalor, scourges which might seem perilously evocative of modern times. Thus the appropriate derisive tone which pervades the film from beginning to end.

About the director

Ben Wheatley (b. 1972, Billericay, UK) is regarded as one of Britain’s most original contemporary directors. He began working in animation, short films and advertising, then worked for television (often for comedy programmes) and also tapped into the viral phenomenon. He made a name for himself on the feature film stage with his very first film Down Terrace (2010). The dark flick Kill List (2011) made its way to the American festival South by Southwest and then ended up at Karlovy Vary as well. Sightseers (2012) was premiered at Cannes and, like the director’s previous works, then screened at festivals all over the world, including Toronto, Rotterdam and Sundance. He also writes scripts and edits, and collaborates with his wife Amy Jump, who wrote A Field in England, Wheatley’s fourth feature title.


Protagonist Pictures
48-48 Great Portland Stcy, W1W 7NB, London
United Kingdom
Tel: +44 207 734 9000

About the film

Black & white, DCP
Festival premiere

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Director: Ben Wheatley
Screenplay: Amy Jump
Dir. of Photography: Laurie Rose
Music: Jim Williams
Editor: Amy Jump, Ben Wheatley
Producer: Claire Jones, Andy Starke
Production: Rook Films
Cast: Julian Barratt, Peter Ferdinando, Richard Glover, Michael Smiley
Contact: Protagonist Pictures


Ben Wheatley

Film Director

David Bartholomew

Sales Agent

Andrew Starke


Nada Cirjanic

Richard David Glover



© 2020 FILM SERVIS FESTIVAL KARLOVY VARY, a.s. +420 221 411 011 All contacts

CinemasCinemas PartnersPartners
ProgramProgram About the projectAbout the project
HistoryHistory GalleryGallery
Festival DailyFestival Daily
HistoryHistory ContactsContacts
Archive of filmsArchive of films KVIFF TalksKVIFF Talks
Industry Days July 5 - July 8Industry Days July 5 - July 8 ContactsContacts
VideogalleryVideogallery GalleryGallery
HistoryHistory Festival GuideFestival Guide