Welsh actress Morfydd Clark shared her concern for the well-being of health workers during the Covid-19 pandemic, saying that “the circumstances mean you cannot do enough, while being called a hero, It’s very difficult”.
The actress, who is currently filming the Lord of the Rings Amazon TV series in New Zealand, stars in the British horror film Saint Maud, about a young hospice nurse who has suffered from mental health issues and believes she hears the voice of God.
Clark, who was born in Sweden but raised in Cardiff, says she has several parents who work in care professions and sought their advice before filming the role.
“I talked a lot to my mother and my cousins to find out where Maud is from. Maud used to work for a hospital, and now she’s in the private sector and the public feels like in the past something terrible happened working with her, which knocked her over.
“I was talking to my mom about it, and she told me you could handle everything, if you had the reserves for it.”
“But if you can’t constantly find someone to change beds on time, or to make sure they’re not dehydrated, or to comfort someone, you feel part of their humiliation. It really struck me.
“Maud has entered a career where she takes care of people and she feels she is constantly failing. This guilt is enormous – and when God comes to her and tells her that he forgives her, it is heaven for her.
“The pandemic has been really difficult for everyone in this area … [like them] Maud is just a person who wants to get it right. “
Although Cineworld has announced the temporary closure of all its cinemas in the UK, Saint Maud will hit theaters this Friday – and the film has received critical acclaim since its premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2019.
The Daily Mirror called her feature film debut and feature film director, Rose Glass, “the new mistress of horror,” while Esquire magazine said of the film: “Forget Tenet – the British horror Saint Maud is the movie that should tempt you to come back to theaters “.
Glass describes the positive reviews as “encouraging – as I take it, that means they have Maud as a character; she’s a little weird”.
“I’ve always been interested in psychology and its intersection with religion – what prompts people to do violent things. The kind of movies I’m interested in aren’t always pure horror, but they draw on the macabre, the mess of life. “
Maud’s job is to provide hospice care for Amanda (played by Jennifer Ehle of Pride and Prejudice), a terminally ill woman who has had a successful artistic career.
Glass explains that Maud was originally going to be a novice nun, “but I thought that was too cliché, and I started to think about what could be the modern equivalent of a saint, and he was a caregiver.
“At first Maud just heard the voice of God, but I became more curious about her relationship with Amanda. I didn’t consciously choose them to be two women, but a lot of movies that I love do. involve two people losing their minds in a confined space. “
The director also wonders if, after the lockdown, “more people can see Maud moping in bed and understanding the angst and the weirdness.”
Clark, who has been successful in the theater as well as in films like The Personal Story of David Copperfield by Armando Iannucci, worries that there might be a lot of lonely and isolated young people, who like Maud, are invisible.
“I have a feeling that for me there have been many opportunities where maybe someone wouldn’t have forgiven me, or I could have behaved less well, or just didn’t respond to something. , or even end up in another city, and my life wouldn’t have been.I was the one who was lucky enough to have security around me and to meet lovely people.
“With all of us there are a lot of parallel lives and we look a lot more like Maud than one might imagine. For me, I feel mine is very close, and the horror of the movie for me was definitely her loneliness and how real it was. The hyper-connectedness of this world makes it even more painful for her. “
Saint Maud is being approached for the Bafta 2021 nominations, and Clark hopes the move towards greater diversity will be reflected in the film industry.
“The more we make filmmaking accessible to everyone, the more we can tell interesting stories. I really feel that with something like the color-inclusive version of Armando by David Copperfield, that’s how the pieces from epoch should always be cast now.
“I feel very lucky to come now, because a lot of people have fought to make someone like me find life quite pleasant.”
Saint Maud hits UK cinemas on October 9, 2020.
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