Quick Review: Eyes of My mother
Do not eat pizza while watching this movie. Though it may not have copious amounts of gore, some of the most brutal scenes in the film are captured in a way that left my imagination to depict a more disturbing picture than what could have actually been shown on screen, even though it's shot entirely in black and white. That being said I put my paused the movie and ate my pizza before continuing. The story opens with a young girl and her mother who appears to have been teaching her daughter some extensive lessons in anatomy, when they are intruded upon by a questionably awkward character who completely changes the young girls life in a brutal act. Once her father comes home to see what's happened, things take a slightly better turn but not really in the way you'd expect.
Told mainly through visuals and a script very light on dialogue (and for this I give praise), it's made clear the kind of person this girl grows up to become and what's depicted is slightly heart breaking yet disturbing at the same time. Themes of loneliness and morality are depicted here so you could say it's a bit of a drama as well but not in a sweet or romantic way in the slightest. This is definitely a horror movie and scenes like a hissing woman in chains crawling on the floor and the protagonist (if you want to call her that) dancing peacefully to a record player in the presence of a casually seated corpse, make that apparent.
For a first time directorial debut, I was fooled into thinking this was something from an established foreign director. In the case of Nicolas Pesce who hasn't been more than a production assistant on a small number of films, it's easy to see that a lack of directing experience can sometimes be overcome by a strong vision and a great production team as we've seen in previous surprise successes like The Witch in 2016. Similar to The Witch, every shot here is beautifully and I might add very interestingly framed, giving a perfect sense of the space and setting in which the story is being told.
There aren't any horror tropes such as a killer on the loose or annoyingly loud jump scares, just a sad and twisted tale, grisly in nature yet somehow able to keep a sense of serenity, making it all the more disturbing in tone. Some may find the lack of suspense a bit dull, but Its subtlety and simplicity seem to be what makes it special and will leave certain images burned in my brain.