Edge of Madness

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Edge of Madness
Edge of Madness FilmPoster.jpeg
Directed by Anne Wheeler
Produced by William Wallace Gray
Written by Charles K. Pitts
Anne Wheeler
Based on A Wilderness Station
by Alice Munro
Starring Brendan Fehr
Paul Johansson
Corey Sevier
Jonas Chernick
Caroline Dhavernas
Music by Randolph Peters
Cinematography David Frazee
Edited by Robert Lower
Credo Entertainment
Gregorian Films
Distributed by Lionsgate
Release date
  • January 1, 2002 (2002-01-01)
Running time
99 minutes
Country Canada
Language English

Edge of Madness is a 2002 drama film based on the short story A Wilderness Station, written by Alice Munro. It stars Brendan Fehr, Caroline Dhavernas, and Corey Sevier.


The story is told in the present and flashbacks of a young woman, Annie (Caroline Dhavernas) who was abused by her husband, Simon (Brendan Fehr) whilst his brother, George (Corey Sevier) was seemingly helpless to intervene. The film hits an interesting twist when Simon is murdered. Annie is convinced that she is the murderer, even as she gets herself admitted to the gaol in the Fort.

In 1851, Annie is living in an orphanage and is put into an arranged marriage to Simon, who takes her to a homestead which is still being built. He puts her to work cooking and cleaning for him and his brother, George. At night, Simon expects Annie to submit to his rough sexual advances, even raping her several times. George tries to talk to Simon about treating Annie better, but his pleas fall on deaf ears. Simon becomes ever more brutal towards Annie, even beating her while he's in a drunken rage.

Meanwhile, George himself is interested in pursuing Annie, which puts her into emotional turmoil. Simon's murder culminates these events, with Annie being locked up in the gaol, while a Detective named Mullen investigates.

Through flashbacks, we learn that George, distraught from witnessing how his brother treated Annie, kills Simon by hitting him in the back with an axe. He brings Simon's body back to the homestead, telling Annie that a tree branch had fallen on him. Annie, by this time, had been driven mad from the beatings and rapes Simon had forced upon her. She hits Simon posthumously on the head with a rock. She and George consummate their feelings. Days later, she admits herself to the gaol, while George has fled the homestead to stay with a neighboring family.

Annie finds out while in the gaol that she is pregnant, but is not certain whether the father is Simon or George. She declares the baby girl as being Simon's child, so that the child will always be welcome and cared for in later life.

George marries the neighboring family's daughter, Jenny.


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