The Eyes of My Mother

The Eyes of My Mother is a painstakingly-crafted black-and-white chiller that has been described as a horror/drama.  While writer/director Nicolas Pesce delivers a heart-wrenching story with unsettling imagery, it all adds up to a bleak and empty experience.

During her tragic life, Francisca (Kika Magalhaes) is stripped of her parents and is left to live in loneliness.  She attempts to connect with locals, but since tragedies have eclipsed any moments of maturity, her perception of life is askew.  Therefore, she finds it easy to latch on to odd obsessions.  These habits develop drastically during her isolation until Francisca’s mental abuse completely overtakes her personality.

When compared to 2016’s Darling (another black-and-white horror about a lonely, psychologically unstable woman), The Eyes of My Mother is much more effective.  However, just as Darling was pretentiously overstuffed with wink-n-nod homage, The Eyes of My Mother has more style than substance;  perhaps to cover up for how thin the material is.

According to the press notes, filmmaker Pesce’s slight empathy for aberrant peculiarities found in the news is what led to the film’s conception.  However, the reasonings behind Francisca’s desperate decisions provided by Pesce’s screenplay are surprisingly basic.  He’s wise for trusting his audience by not spelling out each detail of his story, but more elaboration would’ve earned more memorability and significance for this otherwise passable slow burn.


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Addison Wylie: @AddisonWylie

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