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  • Production
  • TBC
  • Drama, Film4
  • 2016

Una

Film4

Synopsis

Rooney Mara and Ben Mendelsohn star in Benedict Andrews' adaptation of Blackbird, a thriller which follows a young woman’s journey to reclaim her past.

About

Una, based on David Harrower's play Blackbird, follows a young woman’s journey to reclaim her past. Fifteen years earlier, Una ran away with an older man, Ray, a crime for which he was arrested and imprisoned. When she comes across a photo of him in a trade magazine, Una tracks him down and turns up at his workplace. Her abrupt arrival threatens to destroy Ray’s new life and derail her stability. Unspoken secrets and buried memories surface as Una and Ray sift through the wreckage of the past. Their confrontation raises unanswered questions and unresolved longings. It will shake them both to the core. Una gazes into the heart of a devastating form of love and asks if redemption is possible. Una is the feature debut for director Benedict Andrews, with David Harrower adapting his play for the screen.

Cast & Connections

Actors: Rooney Mara, Ben Mendelsohn, Riz Ahmed
Director: Benedict Andrews
Writer: David Harrower
Producers: Maya Amsellem, Patrick Daly, Jean Doumanian
Photography: Thimios Bakatakis

Press Reactions

David Ehrlich for Indiewire

Heavy as the human heart and twice as hard, “Una” is a story of sexual abuse that vibrates with the anxious uncertainty of a survivor, a dialogue-driven drama that simmers with the combustible suspense of a Tarantino movie. Adventurously adapted from David Harrower’s Tony-winning “Blackbird” (and boasting a script written by the playwright himself), the film flickers with an intensity worthy of its subject and source material.

Graham Fuller for Screen


Cat and mouse trade places in the exacting psycho-social drama Una, which depicts the eponymous damaged Englishwoman’s stalking of the outwardly ordinary man who, 15 years previously, had a three-month sexual relationship with her when she was aged 13. Adapted by David Harrower from his 2005 play Blackbird, the first feature helmed by the radical Australian stage director-dramatist Benedict Andrews is a crucible for the combustible combination of stars Rooney Mara and Ben Mendelsohn.

David Rooney for The Hollywood Reporter

Opened out for the screen in the playwright's resourceful adaptation, the chamber drama redirects its gaze to favor the perspective of its damaged female protagonist, while effectively heightening the stakes by revealing more of the precariously close outside world. The film has a different though no less riveting intensity, thanks to Rooney Mara's emotionally naked performance in the title role, and unflinching support from Ben Mendelsohn.

The bottom line

Una is produced by Jean Doumanian Productions and WestEnd Films, and received backing from Film4 and Creative Scotland. The film was shot in Southern England, and will premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival 2016.

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