Charlotte Rampling is a Feisty Grandmother in First Trailer for 'Juniper'
"Most people like sunsets… I love the sunrise." Transmission Films has revealed the first trailer for an indie drama from New Zealand titled Juniper, marking the feature directorial debut of filmmaker Matthew J. Saville. When a self-destructive teen is suspended from school and asked to look after his feisty alcoholic grandmother as a punishment, the crazy time they spend together turns his life around. George Ferrier stars as the boy who finds himself rethinking life when he encounters Ruth, his strong-willed grandmother and a former war photographer. Charlotte Rampling also stars, along with Marton Csokas and Edith Poor. This definitely looks like a feisty little film about the challenges of life, including how to deal with your own family. Rampling looks like she's at the top of her game here, a complex role with many layers. I'm surprised this hasn't shown up at any film festivals, it this seems like the perfect film for a festival audience.
Here's the official NZ trailer (+ poster) for Matthew Saville's Juniper, direct from Transmission's YouTube:
Since his mother's death, Sam (George Ferrier) has been on a self-destructive spiral that could lead to his death. Sam was not with his mother when she passed and has felt the shame of it ever since. In fact, he is planning to take his own life. Until he returns home from boarding school to find his wheelchair-bound English grandmother, Ruth (Charlotte Rampling), has moved in. Ruth is an ex-war photographer with a lust for life and a love of the bottle. Sam soon finds himself profoundly confronted by her alcoholic wit and chutzpah. Their first meeting is awkward; their second violent. Things get worse when Sam finds himself stranded alone with her and her nurse Sarah for the school holidays – a disruption that messes with Sam's plans to take his own life. A battle of supremacy ensues, one that Ruth eventually wins when she drinks Sam under the table. Sam puts his plans to die aside and starts to find inspiration and meaning in his grandmother's lust for life and her photos as a war photographer. Juniper is both written and directed by New Zealand actor / filmmaker Matthew J. Saville, making his feature directorial debut after a few other short films previously. This hasn't premiered at any festivals or elsewhere, as far as we know. Transmission Films will debut Saville's Juniper in NZ cinemas starting August 26th. No US release date has been set yet.