Fashion photographer turned filmmaker Sean Ellis follows up his offbeat romantic comedy Cashback with a glossy horror thriller in which Lena Headey’s London hospital radiologist reckons she’s being haunted by her own double. This spooky state of affairs seems to stem from a dinner party involving her father (Richard Jenkins), her French architect boyfriend (Melvil Poupaud), her brother (Asier Newman) and his girlfriend (Michelle Duncan), which gets interrupted when a huge mirror comes crashing from the wall. Seven years bad luck? If you were a character in The Brøken you’d be lucky to live so long.
As he puts Headey and co through the wringer, Ellis unblushingly borrows from a bunch of older movies, ranging from the famous (Invasion of the Body Snatchers) to the little known (notably the 1970 Roger Moore chiller The Man Who Haunted Himself), but he does conjure up a spine-chilling frisson of fear all his own when anyone passes a mirror. And if you dared to think that it was safe to go back into the shower, now that almost 50 years have passed since Psycho, he may make you think again with a spot of grisly mayhem that shows that ‘bloodbath’ isn’t just a lurid figure of speech. (General release from 30th January.)