And Then Come The Nightjars

Reviewed by Vaughan Ames

We started our new season of world movies on Sunday night with a UK film 'And then Come the Nightjars' and we were lucky enough to get the director, Paul Robinson, to come along to answer questions afterwards. The film is based around the foot and mouth epidemic in 2001 but, whilst it began with this, it was more of a study of the relationship between a farmer, Michael, and his local vet, Jeff: great friends before the epidemic, falling out totally because Jeff couldn't stop his beloved cows from being slaughtered, but becoming great friends again in the years that followed.

Paul Robinson explained that the writer, Bea Roberts – herself the daughter of a vet - thought that men's relationships were often overlooked, and it was the silences and support they offered each other that she was trying to show.

I found the portrayal of the cows' slaughtering was very moving, leaving it pretty much to the audience's imagination, but showing the horror in Michael's face. I was then Jeff who fell apart as his wife left him and the local population hated him, until Michael realised his friendship was too big to ignore Jeff's near suicidal drinking. I wont tell you what happens after that as the Alhambra is showing the film several times – go along and see what you think. I will tell you the club audience of nearly 100 people did enjoy it!