Lizzie - Sky Cinema Premiere

Could Lizzie be an axe murderer?
(Image credit: The Movie Partnership)

An intriguing mystery starring Chloë Sevigny as 1890s heiress Lizzie Borden

Hear the name Lizzie Borden and that macabre rhyme about the axe and the whacks probably comes to mind. But did this young woman, an heiress in 1890s New England, really murder her father and stepmother with an axe?

This intriguing, slow-burning drama presents a shocking solution to the mystery and boasts compelling turns from Sevigny as the headstrong Lizzie and Kristen Stewart as the Irish immigrant maid who becomes her household ally and intimate friend. There is also telling support from Jamey Sheridan and Fiona Shaw as Lizzie's bullying, repressive parents.

Given that most viewers will probably know the gruesome events to which the action is building, it's remarkable how much tension writer Bryce Kass and director Craig William Macneill manage to wring from the tale.

Jason Best

A film critic for over 25 years, Jason admits the job can occasionally be glamorous – sitting on a film festival jury in Portugal; hanging out with Baz Luhrmann at the Chateau Marmont; chatting with Sigourney Weaver about The Archers – but he mostly spends his time in darkened rooms watching films. He’s also written theatre and opera reviews, two guide books on Rome, and competed in a race for Yachting World, whose great wheeze it was to send a seasick film critic to write about his time on the ocean waves. But Jason is happiest on dry land with a classic screwball comedy or Hitchcock thriller.