“The Eyes of My Mother” Review ✦✦✦✦✧

21 March, 2017

Director: Nicolas Pesce
Screenwriter: Nicolas Pesce
Director of Photography: Zach Kuperstein
Kika Magalhaes, Will Brill, Olivia Bond

Synopsis: The lonely daughter of a surgeon finds her life taking a violent turn after her mother is murdered in front of her and the killer is captured by her father, sparking an unusual desire within the girl which leads her down a dark and destructive path.

Eyes of My Mother Review:

A film beginning with death and ending with defiance, “The Eyes of My Mother” is a wounded yet tranquil tale of insanity stemming from a vicious and unnecessary murder within a house reliant on the butchery of livestock. Centred on key transitional phases in the life of a woman who craves control yet refuses to find a true means of escape, “The Eyes of My Mother” uses its biblical moments of transformation to define the damaged existence of someone who loses their closest relative in the period before they can truly comprehend what it means to be alive.

Evaluating the method behind the madness, writer-director Nicolas Pesce cuts down to the bone with a short and sweet tale of rural psychosis that couldn’t be more arresting with its abusive themes and temperament. Magnified through monochrome, “The Eyes of My Mother” sticks to your eyelids like hot tar, trickling into your retinas with its unforgivably bleak and isolated view of human suffering. Designed with a more pleasing aesthetic than worn and torn slasher movies like “The Last House on the Left” and “The Texas Chain Saw Massacre,” the film exudes professionalism and patience, turning blood into water through its sleek grey tones without resorting to the dirt and grit of classic splatter movies.

Made to echo the finest examples of European art cinema, the film feels deliberately detached from its American roots, communicating through both English and Portuguese in a style that more closely resembles a Haneke estrangement piece than a Hooper horror movie. Artistically appealing yet conceptually repellent, “The Eyes of My Mother” begs to be abused, waiting patiently to be scorned through its aberrant tale of warped companionship and self-fulfilment, and yet its fascination with the transitory nature of the human body is put to remarkable use as stolen eyes and severed vocal chords become the template for a more compulsive breed of horror; one where a stab to the heart feels as fulfilling as a tender embrace.


Review Date
The Eyes of My Mother