Another Mother’s Son
Louisa Gould was a normal woman who lived a normal life on the island of Jersey with her husband and two sons. That is, until the Second World War broke out. Left alone to face the horrors of a Nazi occupation, Louisa’s story became an extraordinary one as she took the risk of sheltering a Russian fugitive and hiding him from the German troops marching the island. This true but little-known story was taken on by director Christopher Menaul for the film Another Mother’s Son after it was passed to him by Louisa’s great niece Jenny Lecoat, who had previously spent years researching the tale.
The movie builds gradually, teaching the audience about the protagonist and her situation in preparation for the dramatic events that shape the latter part of the narrative. Aside from the unfortunate choice of war time hit Whispering Grass, which features heavily in the recent creepy BBC series Rillington Place, the production values of the film are on point and set us firmly in 1940s occupied Jersey. Notably, the beautiful sweeping shots of the countryside and the beaches mark a stark contrast to the evil that is occurring amongst the island’s inhabitants.
However, Another Mother’s Son somehow feels more like an extended television drama episode than a feature film, perhaps because of the TV background of many of the cast. And although many of the unbelievable events that take place are in fact true to life, other elements of the movie aren’t quite as feasible; for example the speed in which the Russian character “Bill” learns English and the over-the-top appearance of Louisa’s glasses in the final scene.
That being said, all in all this film is entertaining and very well cast. Harrowing and deeply moving, it effectively portrays that good can be found even at the darkest of times and the support of a loving family will always defy evil. Viewers should expect to take away mixed feelings of anger and hope as well as an overwhelming sense of gratitude that Louisa Gould’s story is not another that is left untold.
Another Mother’s Son is released in cinemas nationwide on 24th March 2017.
Watch the trailer for Another Mother’s Son here: