Berlinale: Programme

Film file



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Nessa and Blaise get petrol for their piece-of-junk lawn mower by stealing it from parked cars. Their makeshift lawn mowing business is hardly booming, but it’s the couple’s only source of income. They are in withdrawal, taking part in a methadone programme, and homeless. The state-sponsored therapeutic care they receive does help, but it also keeps them on a tight leash. The film neither romanticises nor exoticises the pair’s arduous daily routines; its many close-ups of everything from socks being washed to medical procedures cast their path of suffering in a more sober light. But most of all Werewolf is a relationship drama about two individuals with very different personalities. Are they stronger together, or will Nessa eventually have to let go of the hand that’s pulling her down? “It can be very threatening when someone changes,” her social worker says, trying to encourage her not to make the same bad decision again. The film tells the story of this conflict like a sad love song, with brown methadone bottles, Nessa’s hairnet, and the ever more perfect swoop of soft-serve ice cream in the cone as the refrain.

Ashley McKenzie

Canada 2016


78’ · Colour


Bhreagh MacNeil (Nessa)
Andrew Gillis (Blaise)
Mark Woodland (Mark)
Donald Campbell (Young Boy)
Barry Wall (Mechanic)
Katie Appleton (Ice Cream Shop Employee #1)
Jessie MacLean (Ice Cream Shop Employee #2)


Written and directed by
Ashley McKenzie
Director of Photography
Scott Moore
Ashley McKenzie
Youth Haunts
Sound Design
Andreas Mendritzki
Graham Colwell
Production Design
Michael Pierson
Nelson MacDonald, Ashley McKenzie


Ashley McKenzie

Born in 1984 in Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada. She studied English and Film Studies, then she studied directing at the Atlantic Filmmakers Cooperative.


2010 Rhonda’s Party; 8 min. 2012 When You Sleep; 12 min. 2013 Stray; 14 min. 2015 4 Quarters; 13 min. 2016 Werewolf

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2017

Produced by

Grassfire Films