Michael and Pete have been best mates for over 35 years. Michael is about to get married. He doesn’t want a traditional ‘stag do’ and instead opts for a quiet weekend camping on the wilds of Bodmin Moor – with the aim of conquering Brown Willy, Cornwall’s highest hill.
Pete, however, has other ideas. After an unexpectedly debauched first night the two men find themselves disorientated and lost. As they attempt to get back to civilisation they find themselves in an increasingly desperate battle with the barren terrain, unforgiving environment and… each other.
A comedy drama about friendship against the odds, which shows one of Cornwall’s most stunning areas in all its brutal majesty, with standout performances by Cornish actors Ben Dyson and Simon Harvey.
With Brown Willy we experimented with a self-finance / distribution model. The film was shot and produced on a micro budget of £15,000.
Upon its release in 2016, Brown Willy had an unprecedented independent southwest cinema release – playing for six weeks at Cornish cinema chain, WTW (Truro, Newquay, Wadebridge and St Austell) and independent cinemas Newlyn Filmhouse and The Poly (Falmouth).
Further screenings took place in independent cinemas in Exeter, Warwick, Leeds, Bristol (The Watershed), Torrington and London (Clapham Picture House).
The film was screened internationally at independent film festivals including Maryland International Film Festival, Miami International Film Festival and Indie Hype Festival. In the summer of 2016, the film broke into the UK’s Top Fifty Box Office.
The film was released on DVD / VOD in 2017 and is available to buy here from www.brettharvey.co.uk. The film was also released in the USA by Meridian Releasing in March 2019.
Watch Brown Willy online
‘Cornwall’s answer to Withnail and I‘ – Ryan Gilbey, The New Statesman
‘A voyage of existential contemplation and uproarious comedy’ – Lorenzo Lombardi, UK Film Review