Mike Flanagan Calls Forgotten Gem “A haunting and beautiful film”

Mike Flanagan on Picnic at Hanging Rock
Anne-Louise Lambert, 1975

Peter Weir’s Picnic at Hanging Rock is a haunting masterpiece. It’s one of those rare films I’ve been unable to shake since I first watched it years ago. Clued into it being a beguiling, strange, subversive mystery, I watched in on a whim, not knowing what to expect. I was astounded, and since then, I’ve put Weir’s films and Joan Lindsay’s novel of the same name up there with some of my favorite pieces of art of all time. Last week, Master of Horror Mike Flanagan logged Picnic at Hanging Rock himself on Letterboxd. Read on to see what he had to say.

Per Max: When a group of schoolgirls mysteriously disappear, the survivors find their lives changed forever.

Mike Flanagan logged the film last week, remarking, “Peter Weir’s second film is an ethereal, surreal, hypnotic experience.” Flanagan adds, “It is not the docudrama one might expect. Weir’s film is instead a bottomless mystery that plays out like a faintly remembered dream. There aren’t answers to be found, only the gaping abyss of the unknown, and a sense that we all exist near a chasm into a world beyond our understanding… and we may – if we are unlucky – simply fall into it.”

Mike Flanagan adroitly conceptualizes what makes Picnic at Hanging Rock endure. It’s a classic, unclassifiable experience you need to see. It’ll wash over you effortlessly and refuse to let you go. Flanagan’s review concluded, “It is a haunting and beautiful film, and it casts a potent spell.”

If you’re not already following Mike Flanagan on Letterboxd, you definitely should be. While you’re there, consider giving me a follow (I’m not nearly as exciting, however), and let me know if you’re a fan of Picnic at Hanging Rock over on Twitter @Chadiscollins.



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