The film takes place in the rural Devon countryside, where a family of four has just moved from London. Events are related from the perspective of 15 year-old Tom (Freddie Cunliffe), who is unhappy with life away from the city. His 18 year-old sister, Jessie (Lara Belmont), has apparently adjusted better than he has. His parents (Ray Winstone, Tilda Swinton) seem happy and comfortable in their new home, and his mother is on the verge of delivering her third child. Then, shortly after the baby is born, Tom’s world is turned upside down when he spies a covert sexual encounter between Jessie and his father. Tom confronts Jessie about the incident, but she denies it, accusing him of having an overactive imagination. He is not convinced, however, and sets out to learn the facts. The truth he must face, and its ramifications upon every member of the family, form The War Zone’s core drama.
Often mistaken for an American because of his skill at imitating accents, actor Tim Roth was born Timothy Simon Smith in London, England on May 14, 1961 to mother Ann, a teacher and landscape painter, and father Ernie, a journalist who changed the family name to “Roth”. Tim grew up in Dulwich, a middle-class area in the south of London. He demonstrated his talent for picking up accents at an early age when he attended school in Brixton, where he faced persecution from classmates for his comfortable background and quickly perfected a cockney accent to blend in. He attended Camberwell Art College and studied sculpture before he dropped out and pursued acting. The blonde actor’s first big break was the British TV movie Made in Britain (1982) (TV). Roth made a huge splash in that film as a young skinhead named Trevor. He next worked with director Mike Leigh on Meantime (1984) (TV), which he has counted among his favorite projects. He debuted on the big screen when he filled in for Joe Strummer… read more
[Spoilers] Deeply disturbing portrait of child abuse in a family, which dares to show an abuser not as a monster but as for the most part a loving parent. The final scene, which implies the cyclical nature of abuse, is one of the most brutal ever endings in film. Belmont's performance especially is staggering.
Disturbing doesn't even cover it. Ranks among the most nausiating film experiences I've had. Not because it is bad - that not what I'm saying - merely that it really succeeds portraying something awful.... and afterwards you won't know what to do.