Dark Harbour

Dark Harbour (2009)

13 mins B/W

"Dark Harbour" Still

Madame Zola is an itinerant fraudulent psychic who travels from town to town, preying on the credulous – accompanied by her reluctant accomplice, her daughter Marie. Suffering from a terminal illness, Madame Zola takes out her bitterness on her victims, alienating Marie and causing conflict and resentment among the gullible villagers. A noir-influenced black comedy.


Margaret Henderson, Esther Cohen, Keiran Ure, Tonia Flynn, Fraser Goodall

Directed by Paul Bruce, Screenplay by Paul Bruce, Music by David Barclay,
Music for the trailer written by Dmytro Morykit,
Cinematography by Mark Finlay

Production Notes

The Film was shot in Edinburgh, and in rural East Lothian in the United Kingdom during the winter of 2009.

Several aspects of the film were shot under extremely trying circumstances: the lighting control pack didn’t work which caused the lights to flicker continuously. We got around this by introducing a close-up of a candle; this lulls the audience into thinking the flickering was candlelight! No one has ever commented on the light flickering at any screening!

We achieved the shot where we look up through the water, past Madame Zola’s hat to Marie looking down at the viewer, by filming the hat floating in a tank through a mirror placed on the floor of the tank. We then matted in the shot of Marie.

Another difficulty we faced was the sound of very busy traffic passing by the sequences filmed in the village streets. The sound editor (Mark Finlay) painstakingly replaced each of these traffic sounds with a seagull sound effect recorded for this purpose earlier in the day.