To some, ‘purgatory’ relates to a space of limbo between Heaven and Earth. However, to a handful of residents near Stroud, purgatory is much more close at hand – it’s the name of a small piece of woodland near where they live. This delightful short documentary follows some of these residents as they talk about their own take on the idea of life, death and purgatory.
James Edmonds created the film in 2008; it had a quite unique genesis – 24 artists of various media were invited to respond to randomly generated map references in the Stroud Valleys area of Gloucestershire. His reference included Purgatory woods – but what started out as an attempt to find out why the wood was so named quickly became a fascinating series of character studies and a quirky humorous and moving reflection on life now and life hereafter, and there are some absolutely delightful gems amongst the scenes that he filmed. While the film has obvious local interest, the appeal goes far beyond the borders of Purgatory woods!
We look forward to screening this film again in the future.
SCREENED AT: The Aeon Festival, August 2010