The mise-en-scène recalls French cinema from the sixties with Le Mépris (1963) and La Piscine (1969) both heavily influencing the film's overall appearance, yet the performances from both Paul and Camilla couldn't be more British. Performed with a sense of middle-class realism, Paul and Camilla's predominance fails to wane upon the arrival of their interrupters. Their importance is marked by scenes of intimacy, whether it be Camilla's insecurity in her ageing looks or Paul's perseverance in making his marriage work, the viewer is constantly teased with scenes that generate empathy for the unlikable protagonists. The couple clash persistently with snappy and unfeeling dialogue, the raw deliverance of which evokes the 'stiff upper-lip' attitude and conflict explored in Joanna Hogg's Archipelago (2010).
The confinements of the cottage and its immediate surroundings create a dense undercurrent that continues to simmer until the film's unexpected, boiling point finale and this is all thanks to Patrick Burniston's subtle yet perfectly matched score. The beauty of this impressive thriller lies not only in its breathtaking visuals but in its perfect composure of rapid, blossoming tension. Engrossing, thrilling and boldly executed, Fossil is a remarkably confident feature from Walker. A breath of fresh air that captures perfectly the essence of a discordant couple, the bitter after-taste of a marriage turned sour and the reason why, no matter who or where you are, you should never talk to strangers.