I was intrigued by The Kettering Incident from the minute the first previews were shown, and it hasn't disappointed. Set and filmed on location in Tasmania, this Australian production is not only visually stunning, but rich and compelling. Everything from the directing to the writing to the acting is perfect.
Without giving too much away, the basic story is of Anna Macy (Elizabeth Debicki), a doctor working in London who returns home unexpectedly to Australia. The townspeople of Kettering are not too happy about her arrival and when a teenage girl goes missing, the memories and mysterious disappearance of Anna's childhood friend are brought to the surface along with a myriad of questions, secrets and strange events.
The opening credits create a haunting atmosphere of flickering lights and fluttering moths and birds in the misty dark green of the forest, no doubt a sign of things to come or maybe of things past. Each episode is as foreboding as the last and moves along at a nice even pace, while at the same time threatening to unravel, keeping the viewer engaged. I sometimes find it frustrating only getting little bits of information at a time, but here I am completely captivated by it and have found myself watching each episode more than once.
Debicki is outstanding and displays great depth in what is quite a challenging role. Her quiet, but strong presence is magnetic and ethereal. Alongside Debicki is an array of fine Australian actors including Matthew Le Nevez, Henry Nixon, Anthony Phelan, Alison Whyte, Ben Oxenbould, Damien Garvey, Sacha Horler and Suzi Dougherty. All are excellent as they bring to life the heart of Kettering, each character multi-faceted and complex.
The directing and cinematography is just breathtaking. There is an otherworldly aspect to it. The lingering shots of the forest, mountains, lonely roads, the moon peaking through the clouds, the glow of a street light in the dark of night, and a colour palette of greens, blues and greys all add to the mesmerising beauty and eeriness of the small town. The music is also fantastic and suitably ominous.
Creators Vicki Madden and Vincent Sheehan, and all involved have made something special. The Kettering Incident is high-quality Australian drama at it's very best. I will be sad to see it finish, but I'm also eagerly waiting to see what happens next and how it will all end. Not to be missed!