Now before you get angry with me, I know The Nightingale isn’t a Horror film, but that doesn’t make it any less horrifying. I can’t remember another film in recent years that I peeked at through my fingers as much as I did this one. Particularly the scene I’ve featured. It’s destroying. BRUTAL with a capital B.R.U.T.A.L.
As with every film I share here, I highly recommend you watch the full film before you watch just this scene. It concerns a major plot point that you really deserve to learn the way the filmmaker intended, and not out of context on some jerk’s fanboy site.
The Nightingale was written and directed by Jennifer Kent of The Babadook (2014) fame and shows her having grown exponentially since that film’s release (and she was already pretty remarkable). The film is not for the faint of heart, trust. There were several moments where I just had to take a short pause.
Lead actor Aisling Franciosi, who plays Clare, a young Irish convict who seeks revenge for a terrible act of violence committed against her family, is absolutely outstanding. If it weren’t for her, many scenes may have actually verged on being a bit exploitative. But she throws herself in completely and and just tears your heart to shreds. When all is said and done, it almost feels like you actually witnessed something personally.
So while it isn’t “Horror” per se, it is without a doubt some of the most horrifying passages I’ve ever seen on film. If you don’t feel the same after watching it, I’m truly concerned about you.