Felicia’s Journey is hypnotic tale of seduction, irrevocable love, and murder. It stars Elaine Cassidy as Felicia, a teen age girl who’s journeyed from Ireland to England to find her boyfriend after she discovers she’s pregnant. Once in England, she runs into an older man named Hilditch, superbly performed by Bob Hoskins, who seems very earnest and kind on the outside, but a malevolent side lies just underneath the exterior. Felicia is lost and doesn’t seem to know where to begin her search. She’s leaving behind a family and town that was pitiless to her condition and had all but run her out of Ireland. Felicia’s vulnerability creates the perfect condition for Hilditch to move in and take advantage of. Hilditch offers her help with directions, a ride, and finally brings her into his home. By the time Felicia enters his home, she’s fallen into a deadly trap. Hilditch is a psychotic killer, who is slowly readying himself for the next victim.
The plot unfolds with a gradual and confident pace that gives the feel of Fritz Lang or Hitchcock. Hoskins’ performance is chilling and the best one he’s given in years, and his Hilditch is an interesting case study of a man gone mad. Although the film takes risks in trying to reverse the modern trend of blood and gore in the serial killer genre, it ends up with a placid mood that made me want just a bit more. At points where Felicia seems to be in danger I didn’t quite feel her life was threatened because of the film’s pace. But as a film about a disturbed individual with a disordered past who confronts a lost girl trying to start her future, the film works well.