Making its debut at Sundance earlier this year was debut feature film director Nicolas Pesce‘s American Gothic horror picture The Eyes of My Mother. For those of you who weren’t in attendance at that film festival or any of the other appearances on the circuit, the film’s first trailer is now available. And it’s definitely an attention-grabber. That’s due in part to the beautiful black-and-white aesthetic and in part to the butchery presented with surgical precision.
The story centers on Francisca, whose interest in anatomy that was imparted on her by her surgeon mother became corrupted in her youth by an unexpected visit. This morbid curiosity festers over time, leading to manifestations of her loneliness, detachment from death, and longing for meaningful connection as a young adult. It’s then that audiences will see what dark paths Francisca’s story will take.
Watch the trailer below:
Here’s the official synopsis for The Eyes of My Mother:
In their secluded farmhouse, a mother, formerly a surgeon in Portugal, teaches her daughter, Francisca, to understand anatomy and be unfazed by death. One afternoon, a mysterious visitor shatters the idyll of Francisca’s family life, deeply traumatizing the young girl, but also awakening unique curiosities. Though she clings to her increasingly reticent father, Francisca’s loneliness and scarred nature converge years later when her longing to connect with the world around her takes on a dark form.
Shot in crisp black and white, the haunting visual compositions evoke its protagonist’s isolation and illuminate her deeply unbalanced worldview. Genre-inflected, but so strikingly unique as to defy categorization, writer/director Nicolas Pesce’s feature debut allows only an elliptical presence in Francisca’s world, guiding our imaginations to follow her into peculiar, secret places.
There’s also a bonus chat with director Pesce and producer Jacob Wasserman about the film’s Sundance debut, which the cinephiles among you should enjoy (via The Film Stage):