Film-maker Carol Morley's new film The Falling concerns an outbreak of mass fainting at an English girl’s school in the late 1960s.

With mass hysteria people have to believe they are ill and collectively communicate that illness through psychological means. 

Maisie Williams plays Lydia, a clever young woman who has a difficult relationship with her agoraphobic mother (Maxine Peake) and an intense one with her best friend Abbie (Florence Pugh).

Abbie is the more provocative and sexually curious of the two girls, which leads to some conflict between them and then to a tragic catastrophe which provokes the fainting, which spreads through the school like a contagion.

The Falling has been compared to Sofia Coppola’s The Virgin Suicides (1999) and to Peter Weir’s Picnic at Hanging Rock (1975). Tracy Thorn from Everythinmg But The Girl composed the soundtrack, while the renowned cinematographer Agnes Godard filmed the movie.

The Falling is released at the IFI  and selected cinemas from April 24 www.ifi.ie