Light Years

Light Years

Esther May Campbell

Feature Film

Eight-year-old Rose believes a family is like a stellar constellation – even if some stars died millions of years ago, even if they are light years apart, they are all somehow connected.

Over the course of one sun-soaked summer’s day, Light Years explores just how strong this bond is in the case of Rose’s family. The two older siblings Ewan and Ramona share their father Dee’s listlessness which appears to be caused by the painful absence of the mentally ill mother Moira. But when Rose sets out on her own to visit her mother in her care home, she unleashes a new dynamism amongst the psychologically paralysed members of the family.

With laconic humour and powerful imagery, Esther May Campbell captures in her debut film all the small nuances of a complex network of relations. Mixing social and poetic realism, her experimental drama tells the story of a traumatised family and establishes a remarkable closeness particularly to her young protagonists.

Film series Internal Migration

Director / Script

Esther May Campbell


Zac Nicholson, Will Pugh


Chris Barwell


Eric Chenaux


Sophie Burton, Zamira Fuller, James Stuckey, Beth Orton, Muhammet Uzuner


Samm Haillay, Wendy Bevan-Mogg, Duane Hopkins, Andrew McVicar


The Match Factory

Esther May Campbell

Born in London in 1972, photographer and film-maker Esther May Campbell has directed music videos, sex education films as well as television productions for Channel 4 and the BBC (Wallander starring Kenneth Branagh). Her films often tell of lost souls, tragic lovers and daydreamers, as does her short film September, which won a BAFTA Award. Working with the Cube Cinema collective in her adopted home of Bristol, Campbell organises a community cinema for children affected by the aftermath of the Haiti and Nepal earthquakes.

Films by Esther May Campbell
Wallander 2012 | Skins 2010 | September 2008 | Doctors 2006-2007 | Delilah 2001