The Woodsman

Sunday 16th October 5:00 PM


A remarkably assured first film by Nicole Kassell, The Woodsman treats a sensational subject in a resolutely unsensational way, and proves yet again what a fine and subtle actor Kevin Bacon is. He plays a paedophile trying to build a new life after being released from prison after 12 years.

He is well supported by Kyra Sedgwick (also Mrs Bacon - here's a couple whose chemistry shows up on screen) and Mos Def is outstanding as a cynical parole officer expecting Bacon to re-offend again. The film makes it clear that this is a possibility, while also showing us a man who is not a monster but twisted by sexual urges most of us don't feel. The film, taken from Stephen Fechter's play, allows Bacon a surprising and controversial kind of redemption. Overall it's a thoughtful and resonant piece of work.

Rob Mackie, The Guardian