It seems like an age has passed since On Chesil Beach – Dominic Cooke’s tender and heartbreaking film adaptation of Ian McEwan’s novel – premiered at last years London Film Festival. Finally, the film, which stars Lady Bird’s Saoirse Ronan, Billy Howle and Anne-Marie Duff, Adrian Scarborough (Vera Drake), Emily Watson (Testament of Youth) and Samuel West (Darkest Hour) see’s its release into UK cinemas on May 18th.
Adapted from the novel by Ian McEwan – who also serves as the screenwriter for the film – the synopsis reads; It is summer 1962, and England is still a year away from huge social changes: Beatlemania, the sexual revolution and the Swinging Sixties. Florence (Ronan) and Edward (Howle) are just married and honeymooning on the dramatic coastline of Chesil Beach in Dorset. However, the hotel is old fashioned and stifling, and underlying tensions between the young couple surface and cast unexpected shadows over their long-anticipated wedding night.
From the precise depiction of two young lovers to the touching story of how their unexpressed misunderstandings and fears shape the rest of their lives, ON CHESIL BEACH is a tender story which shows how the entire course of a life can be changed, by a gesture not made or a word not spoken.
We spoke to one half of the married couple, Billy Howle, on his character Edward. The harsh yet tender realities of the 60’s where attitudes hadn’t all caught up with the free love era, working with Saoirse Ronan and his upcoming role in David MacKenzie’s Outlaw King.
On Chesil Beach is in UK cinemas from 18th of May