Feature, 90min
VS, 2020
Engels

Director: Jonathan Cuartas
Cast: Ingrid Sophie Schram, Owen Campbell, Patrick Fugit
Genre: Drama, Horror

Brutality and tenderness are perfectly balanced in taut and claustrophobic family drama with elements of gruesome horror.

Dwight and Jessie are grown up siblings, living together with their younger brother Thomas and making sure he stays alive despite his condition. When Dwight and Jessie fall out, their delicate survival strategy falls apart. Meanwhile, with Thomas wanting to leave the house to make friends, a tragedy becomes inevitable. Taut and claustrophobic drama with elements of gruesome horror. 


Shot in the square Academy format and largely set in the house and a few other locations, the dimmed lights and the dusty, creepy atmosphere make this a taut and claustrophobic experience. The focus is entirely on the characters and their suffocating interdependence. The younger brother has become a parasite, a fungus feeding off his loved ones and their sense of guilt and pity. The direction is superbly controlled and while many of the gruesome scenes happen offscreen, it makes them by no means less effective. This is a film where brutality and tenderness are perfectly balanced and the ending is one of regret and grief, rather than a sigh of relief.