BFI London Film Fest

Wash Westmoreland – Earthquake Bird #LFF2019

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4 min. and 1 sec.

British director Wash Westmoreland spoke to us from the BFI London Film Festival premiere of Earthquake Bird about his 1989 Japan-set thriller.

Play Podcast
4 min. and 1 sec.

PODCAST | Sarah Bradbury interviews Wash Westmoreland, director of the film Earthquake Bird.

To listen to the interview, click on the ► icon on the right, just above the picture

British director Wash Westmoreland spoke to us from the BFI London Film Festival premiere of Earthquake Bird about his 1989 Japan-set thriller. He explained why he was inspired to adapt Susanna Jones’ novel, how lucky he was to cast an actress like Alicia Vikander who could play the cello and learn Japanese for the central role and the excitement of putting a female character at the centre of a genre traditionally dominated by men.

Earthquake Bird: Lucy (Vikander) is a buttoned-up, MUJI-clad translator who has been in Japan for five years and is desperate to blend in. Her reticent nature hides old scars. There’s also the fact that people around her keep dying – accidentally or otherwise. After a street encounter with hot photographer Teiji (Naoki Kobayashi), she quickly finds herself under his spell, despite all the warning signs. And the pot is stirred further when American nurse Lily (Riley Keough) – all blowsy sexual confidence and cultural naïvety – arrives in town and Lucy experiences some frightening impulses. Wash Westmoreland (Colette) has crafted a moody and intriguing update on 1980s psycho-sexual thrillers, shifting the emphasis onto the psychology of the female protagonist. Alicia Vikander is astonishing in a role that explores cultural fascination, belonging and obsession.

To discover more about the film, click here.

  • Reporter
    Sarah Bradbury
  • Guest
    Wash Westmoreland
  • Interviewee role
    Director
  • Film title
    Earthquake Bird
  • Festival section
    Thrill
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