By: Henry J. Fromage (Two Beers) –
Horror can come in many forms- grisly carnage, spooky jump scares, deranged madman, inhuman monsters, ghosts…
Anyway, now that we have the intro out of the way, let’s talk The Eyes of My Mother. You see, horror none of those horror motifs can match a disorienting look at something equally mundane and evil- otherworldly and entirely plausible- and this film has those qualities in spade. Come join us in discovering how one childhood trauma can beget an entire life that… just ain’t right.
Director Nicolas Pesce is a visionary whose visions most people would mistake for bowel-emptying nightmares. He’s crafted a horror tale whose oblique logic and incredibly matter of fact, almost procedural execution will chill you to the core while ensuring you can never tear your eyes away.
Hehe, everything about that cliche + this movie.
Both actresses portraying the central young girl and then young woman do a spectacular job conveying a very logical, very tidy, utterly soulless creature, and the supporting players inhabit this world entirely naturally, especially the psychopath that invades what originally appears to be a bucolic, Norman Rockwell household in the beginning. Pesce’s genius is not really subverting expectations as to what fucked up events will follow, but leaving us no hook to hang those expectations on whatsoever, drawing out scenes and draining out all but the most diagetic sound until you’ve no choice but to stay riveted to the screen until that inevitable hammer falls again.
His compositions and black and white camerawork are gorgeous, showing a particular talent for camera placement and affinity for at a distance shots that enhance the eye’s natural attraction to the frame while spurring the imagination as to what could possibly happen next in these too wide, almost contextless panoramas. This is a charnel house by way of the arthouse, and all the more disturbing by how difficult you’ll find it to distinguish the two.
This film’s only 76 minutes, but what a brutal 76 minutes… By the third chapter, ‘Family’, you’re ready for the ordeal to be over, no matter how impressive and beguiling its execution. This film… hurts you.
The Eyes of My Mother is a frighteningly captivating debut from Nicolas Pesce. The monsters he conjures are all the more disturbing in their plausibility.
The Eyes of My Mother (2016) Drinking Game
Take a Drink: whenever you hear any score
Take a Drink: for babydolls
Take a Drink: for nightgowns
Take a Drink: for old-timey movies
Take a Drink: for fucked up things happening to, you guessed it, eyes
Do a Shot: for murders