TIFF review: Castle In The Ground


CASTLE IN THE GROUND CWC D: Joey Klein. Canada. 105 min. Sep 5, 9:15 pm, TIFF 2; Sep 6, 9:30 pm, Scotiabank 2; Sep 14, 4 pm, Scotiabank 2. Rating: NNNN

After his intimate, devastating drama The Other Half, writer/director Klein delivers a very different study of co-dependency with this story of a young man (Alex Wolff) who falls into the orbit of a troubled neighbour (Imogen Poots) in Sudbury. She’s an opioid addict; he’s about to be.

Castle In The Ground filters a conventional addiction narrative through layers of grief, attachment and atonement, and Klein – an actor himself – lets his cast play those notes fully. Wolff plays a minor-key variation on his lost-soul quality from Hereditary, Poots mixes restlessness and rage as his damaged mentor, and Tom Cullen and Neve Campbell make brief, quietly heartbreaking appearances as people dealing privately with profound pain.

You’ll feel for all of them.


A life-long Torontonian, Norman became the senior film writer for NOW in early 2008. Previously he had reviewed films for Metro newspapers across Canada and covered every video format imaginable (yes, even Beta).

Read more by Norman Wilner

September 2, 2019

12:24 PM