Lady Macbeth was a part of our Film We Love selection back in 2019, when we had a few screenings on Screen Machine. Screen Machine team member Robert says: “With career-launching performances from Florence Pugh (Fighting with my Family, Black Widow) and Cosmo Jarvis (Calm with Horses), superb cinematography and sound design, this is a grim but gripping tale of repression and rebellion.”
William Oldroyd directs Florence Pugh in screenwriter Alice’s Birch’s adaptation of the Russian novella Lady Macbeth of the Mtsensk District by Nikolai Leskov.
Set in 1865 rural England, Katherine (Pugh) lives a controlled and restricted life on the estate of her emotionally distant husband Alexander and his cruel father Boris. When both Boris and Alexander must leave the estate for business, Katherine finds herself with greater freedom than she can remember. She forges new relationships with the estate’s housemaid Anna, and Sebastian, one of her husband’s workers. Her confidence grows, the power dynamics shift, and Alexander and Boris return to a changed estate, and a changed Katherine.
In his feature debut, Oldroyd directs a powerfully sensual performance from Pugh, and tells a captivating story about abuse, violence, race, and class.