Chloë Delanghe

Hexham Heads

4:3, colour and black and white, 5.1. surround, 16mm, 6x4.5cm photographs and VHS scanned to digital file, UK/BE, 34'

Tinted by the red safelight of the darkroom, the film (re)constructs a breathless pastoral horror about a place crystallised in time and terrorised by two 6cm tall stone heads whose current location remains unknown. We visit Rede Avenue – the original source of this supernatural energy – through the shivery stillness of Chloë Delanghe’s grainy photographs and an erratic composition of Sam Comerford performed by an ensemble of musicians across Ireland and Belgium. In Hexham Heads the joint mysteries of photosensitivity and the stone tape theory – which speculates on how minerals can record and replay the energy of hauntings – create a volatile chemical reaction. Delanghe and Driesen defy the impossibility of capturing ghosts in the lens by immersing us in a psychogeographical journey through infinite doors, windows and passages. Ane Lopez

In 1971, a family living in the town of Hexham was plagued by a series of paranormal events. After bringing a pair of small stone heads into their home, the family became terrorized by the ghostly sounds and images these objects exerted. Hexham Heads adopts an impressionistic approach to this contemporary folk tale.

Using the story as a point of departure, the film guides us through a multitude of spaces in which time and matter become still-frozen, stretched, and repeated. A darkroom, an apartment, a house, a warehouse for construction materials, are all connected and portrayed through the spectral lens of photography.

The film is a collaboration between Chloë Delanghe and Mattijs Driesen.

Film by Chloë Delanghe and Mattijs Driesen
Music composed and produced by Sam Comerford

Camera – Mattijs Driesen, Chloë Delanghe, Geert Delanghe, Tuur Oosterlinck
Photography – Chloë Delanghe
Sound – Mattijs Driesen
Editing – Chloë Delanghe and Mattijs Driesen
Music performed by Ultan O’Brien, Branwen Kavanagh, Sam Comerford, Hendrik Lasure en Neil Ó Lochlainn
Music recorded by Koen Gisen at La Patrie
Colour grading – Marie-Sarah Piron

Supported by:
Departement Cultuur Jeugd en Media (Kunstendecreet)

Produced by elephy
co-production Headless Frogman


Hexham Heads received the Jury of Students Award at the 60th edition of Pesaro Film Festival along with a special mention from the SNCCI Critics Award.

“Our prize goes to Hexams Heads by Chloë Delanghe and Mattijs Driesen for its ability to find a new code for a genre starting from its stereotypes. By reasoning on the relation between the viewer and the image, the film bewilders through the coexistence of different audiovisual languages.” (Pesaro Film Festival Jury of Students)

“A film that is both theoretical and sensorial at the same time, in short, in which the reflection on images, cinema and genre becomes one with the filmic experience, with the uneasiness generated by an atypical and unconventional horror, in the challenge, perhaps impossibility, of giving a new weight to images and to our way of looking at them.” (Mattia Caruso – Pointblank)

Press articles:

#PesaroFF60: terza giornata del Concorso del Nuovo Cinema DASScinemag – Paolo Faletta

L’orrore scolpito nella pietra Cine Clandestino – Francesco Del Grosso

Hexham Heads: DARK-ROOM or REDRUM? World Culture IT – Giuseppe Parrella

Intervista a Chloë Delanghe e Mattijs Driesen World Culture IT – Giuseppe Parrella

Hexham Heads PointBlank – Mattia Caruso

Hexham Heads è vita e morte del genere horror Quarta Parete – Bruno Santini

Hexham Heads Cine Lapsus – Marco Romagna

19th Berwick Film and Media Arts Festival Review Corridor 8 – Kate Liston