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The Dryad Tree (2017)

A newlywed wife, moving into her husband's ancestral home, notices something amiss when the beautiful tree in the front yard seems to take a dislike to her.

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(screenplay), (story)
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Payton Applebee ...
Boy Trick or Treater
Alexandra Davidson ...
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Liz
Tom R. Pike ...
Minister
Valentina Ramirez ...
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A newlywed wife, moving into her husband's ancestral home, notices something amiss when the beautiful tree in the front yard seems to take a dislike to her.

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Short | Fantasy

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1 October 2017 (USA)  »

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$22,000 (estimated)
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A thoughtful and romantic fantasy film
23 November 2017 | by See all my reviews

Fans of the work of Thomas Burnett Swann, whose mythological and pastoral fantasies have had a devout following since the 1960s, have long waited for a cinematic treatment of his short stories and novels. I am pleased to say that Peter Davidson's thoughtful adaptation of Swann's "The Dryad-Tree" captures the humor, sensuality, and optimism which characterize Swann's best work.

The story and film revolve around Mary, who discovers that her husband has a secret, which involves a nature spirit living in their yard. The radiant young Elvira Tröger inhabits the character of the dryad beautifully, while Tackbary's guilty but resistant John and Urbanek's Mary, determined to save her marriage despite her husband's secret, work well together to bring an intelligent script to life. Davidson's screenplay revises the story in a few places, building on the material from Swann's story to bring the story into the 21st century and developing the tensions inherent not just in the original story but Swann's work in general. Particularly moving is a celebration of intentional families (Davidson's original and timely addition to Swann's story) which was the cornerstone of much of Swann's other work. Also present is a reminder, central to Swann's writing, about the proper relationship of humanity to the natural environment, and the importance of tradition as a guide to help us navigate the present. Finally, the strong female leads serve as an antidote to the feckless females who are the protagonists of much supernatural romance these days. All of these elements come together to create an enjoyable and thought-provoking short film.

Suitable for and of interest to general audiences, this delightful film will especially appeal to Swann's fans, as well as fans of fantasy and supernatural romance.


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