Review: The Innocents is a big-screen outing not for the faint of heart

If you're an addict of the dark and brooding vibe of Scandi storytelling, the notion of taking that darkness into the light and finding it just as creepy should please you no end.

Set it on a playground and unravel it through the lives of four school children who live there and by crikey you have a big-screen outing that is not for the faint of heart.

The Innocents is told mostly through the eyes of a young girl called Ida as she and her family move into a new apartment block. Her older sister Anna is autistic and Ida's feelings towards her are complex.

It's this relationship that forms the beating heart of the story, as Ida's simmering resentment at having to include Anna in her playtime starts to shift and wane after they befriend two other children, Aisha and Ben.

Their new friends are only just discovering hidden powers, how they will choose to use them will have some devastating consequences.

It's this fascinating high-wire balance between the notion of good and evil seen through the simple lens of child's play which is so perfectly rendered here. The atmospheric cinematography and sound and the pivotal performances from this young cast drive this supernatural thriller home.

I do need to be very clear this film is not for everyone, there are some confrontingly creepy and potentially disturbing moments and somehow everything always feels far more loaded when told through the eyes of children.

But for those who love their cinema to explore and push the boundaries of their senses in fresh and memorable ways, The Innocents on the big screen is definitely for you.

Four stars.