TIFF 2017 Movie Review: APOSTASY (UK 2017) ***

Movie Reviews of films that will be playing at TIFF (Toronto International Film Festival) in 2017. Go to TIFF 2017 Movie Reviews and read reviews of films showing at the festival.

 APOSTASY.jpgA faithful Jehovah’s Witness is forced to shun her own sister because of a religious transgression. As the separation draws out, she starts to question the meaning of God’s love.

Director: Dan Kokotajlo
Writer: Dan Kokotajlo
Stars: Siobhan Finneran, Robert Emms, Sacha Parkinson

Review Gilbert Seah

APOSTASY is a term for the formal abandonment of ones faith, regardless of what the faith might be. In this minimalist family drama set in Manchester, England, the faith of a family is put to the test. The family concerned is the mother, Ivanna (Sobhan Finneran) and her two daughters, 20-year old Louisa (Sacha Parkinson) and 18-year-old Alex (Molly Wright).

They are Jehovah Witnesses, who are rigorously devoted to their religion. They also take their religious mission door to door amongst a large Pakistani community in Oldham of Greater Manchester.

Alex has already received a blood transfusion at an early age, dictated by the hospital to save her life but a definite no-no in the belief of the faith. When Louisa gets impregnated by a non-believer, she is dis-fellowshipped by the Elders of the church. Not only that, but her mother and sister are disassociated and not allowed to see her.

All three main actresses are nothing short of superb. Director Kikotajlo is fond of using close ups to show the emotions of his characters’ faces. APOSTASY is a small budget film that dramatically achieves its aim of revealing the truth and hardships of a religious belief.

Trailer: (non available at time of writing)