Estate review: Urban folklore - SciFiNow - The World's Best Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Magazine

Estate review: Urban folklore

Writer and director Tom Harberd brings ancient religious folklore to the modern streets of urban London in the short film, Estate.


Deeply atmospheric and full of tension, Tom Harberd’s directional debut, Estate, mixes the political and the genre with a tale about animal rights and paganism.

Rick (Samuel Anderson – Doctor Who) is fed up with his home estate in London. He’s mostly surrounded by thoughtless thugs who don’t think twice about beating their pets or poisoning the local wildlife. However, when an old friend, Dan (Martin McCann – The Survivalist) – quite literally – blazes back into his life alongside a stag who sports a burning crown of antlers, his path alters into ways he never imagined.

Harberd’s short film brings the gritty London streets to life with poignant visualisation and sweeping shots, creating a world we would like to see more of. It’s is also filled with ardent central performances from Anderson and McCann as well as The Expanse’s Dominique Tipper who plays local artist, Diana.

Based on a short story by British urban fantasy author China Miéville, Estate combines Britain’s 19th Century religious folklore with London’s modern metropolitan in a 25 minute blast of striking imagery, earnest performances and intriguing themes.

Tom Harberd’s Estate is out now and available to watch here