How many times have you opened a newspaper and learned about ‘a disease that affects one in a million people’? Given that ratio and statistics, there are many unknown or unnamed diseases in the world. A few years ago, I suffered from a stress-related illness that was unnameable by my GP, regarding it as a self-limiting virus.

STARFISH is an independent movie that should open a debate about Sepsis, a disease that affects 150,000 people in the UK each year, of which 45,000 die within 24 hours. Producer Pippa Cross says that the release of the film is timely, as there is a health initiative to increase awareness. Certainly after you view this film, you will probably want to be more aware of it as well.

Actress Joanne Froggatt also lends her name as Executive Producer to this film, which chronicles the true story of happily-married couple Tom and Nicola Ray (Tom Riley and Froggatt).

At the outset, things are more than OK, both are hard-working and loving parents to a daughter, Grace. However, after eating some past sell-by date sausages, Tom falls ill, initially blaming the sausages for his illness. However, it transpires that the effects are far more reaching when Tom is diagnosed with Sepsis and the dynamic of the world and relationship changes…..

STARFISH is above and beyond any number of UK TV dramas and US Movies of the Week; and the film shows how the disease affects all the individuals in the world. Froggatt is absolutely solid in the role of Nicola, as both a wife and mother caught in the middle of something she increasingly is having difficulty accepting and facing up to the challenges that are imminent.

Riley encompasses all manner of emotion and is excellent underneath the first-rate prosthetics in a performance reminiscent of John Hurt as John Merrick in David Lynch’s THE ELEPHANT MAN, where the emotion rises above the make-up.

Audiences may find the images challenging, but the film should not be denied a screening or an audience. Like others, Sepsis is a condition that is not well known to the world – and STARFISH will open up channels and dialogues. The film ultimately is a tale of how love transcends the many challenges and tough setbacks to lead the way and make the world go round.


You can learn more about this condition and other things, as well as how to donate at the following link:

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