Heavenly Creatures

D: Peter Jackson
Wingnut/Fontana (Jim Booth)
New Zealand 1994
98 mins


W: Peter Jackson & Frances Walsh
DP: Alun Bollinger
Ed: Jamie Selkirk
Mus: Peter Dasent
PD: Grant Major

Kate Winslet (Juliet Hulme), Melanie Lynskey (Pauline Parker), Sarah Peirse (Honora Parker), Diana Kent (Hilda Hulme), Clive Merrison (Henry Hulme)

Peter Jackson takes on a more adult theme and filmmaking style following his previous schlock-horror movies (Bad Taste, Braindead), with this mature fantasy based on a real-life murder case which took place in 1950's New Zealand, involving a schoolgirl, who, with the help of her lesbian lover, killed her own mother.
Jackson puts his own spin on the narrative, with artistic fantasy-like dream sequences depicting the girls' flights of fancy taking up huge segments of the film, making it more than a standard reconstruction of a criminal event.
Far from his best work (which was still yet to come when this was released in 1994) but Kate Winslet and Melanie Lynskey's performances are both acted with conviction and the climactic act of violence is particularly cold and grotesque.

Kate Winslet & Melanie Lynskey in Heavenly Creatures
Kate Winslet & Melanie Lynskey in Heavenly Creatures