DESIRE: independent is beautiful and coming to a cinema near you

Written by Fiona Howe on . Posted in Screenings

"Played with estimable intriguing insight into the politics of marriage, the power of language and the dangerous unpredictability of ardour..." 
David Parkinson, Empire Online

Following its successful run of international film festivals from Sarajevo to Amiens, Cambridge and Raindance, British micro-budget indie feature Desire plays the Apollo Piccadilly from 4th March followed by other London cinemas and a nationwide tour of twenty UK cities from mid-March.

Shot on Red Camera entirely in the filmmaker’s London home, with music by his partner/producer Fiona Howe and performances from their children, DESIRE went from concept to world première in under a year for a budget in five figures and was received as one of the most intriguing, best-looking and watchable films of the year

Starring Oscar Pearce (Nicolas Roeg's Puffball) and Paris-based Tella Kpomahou in her first English-speaking role, DESIRE is the story of a screenwriter whose character threatens to take over not just his creative and sexual life but his sanity.

"British film tradition has abandoned too easily the home truths of, say, Coward and Priestley, who opened the shutters on the hidden family life of middle-class Britain"
Director, Gareth Jones 

A first feature by theatre and television veteran Gareth Jones who has worked abroad for most of the last twenty years, DESIRE sets a new benchmark for austerity film.

‘With the dearth of public subsidy and the demise of the UK Film Council, British feature film is looking for a new resourcefulness and new audiences’, says Jones, who draws his inspiration from the continental traditions of Bergman (Scenes from a Marriage) and Pasolini (Teorema) to launch a new, intimate British cinema of ideas.

‘Recession breeds introversion,’ he says, ‘a need to look more closely at who we are’. With songs by the Malian superstar Oumou Sangare, DESIRE plays out behind the doors of a London family home, whose secrets simmer dangerously beneath the surface till desire tips the balance and the highly unstable mix erupts.

‘Of course political campaigning film is needed,’ Jones agrees, ‘that’s why I founded the European training programme Babylon. But British film tradition has abandoned too easily the home truths of, say, Coward and Priestley, who opened the shutters on the hidden family life of middle-class Britain’.

‘If economic recession brings sexual repression, history tells us the result is Fascism. A new puritanism threatens us all and I refuse to let pornography steal the erotic agenda or celebrity opium kid us we’re all talented and famous. Few filmmakers now put themselves on the line. My family in DESIRE is neither unusual nor dysfunctional. Like many others, it has a larger emotional life than anyone owns up to. Political correctness has emancipated some, but cowed many others into the subterfuge and hypocrisy that characterized the fifties.’

DESIRE screens at Apollo Piccadilly 4-10 March; Watermans 7-9 March; for upcoming UK dates see

DESIRE (2009)
Release date: 4th March 2011
Director: Gareth Jones

Cast: Oscar Pearce, Daisy Smith, Tella Kpomahou, Adam Slynn.
Genre: Drama
Length: 95 Mins
Language: English

BBFC Cert: 15.