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. Written by
Ulf Kjell Gür
As far as "conventional" horror goes, this couldn't be more different. It's worlds apart in regards to what we tend to label as horror no jump scares, no boogeyman to run from, and a distinct lack of gratuitous gore has allowed this film to standout as a genuine psychological terror. It's slow in the progression of plot, but the time it takes works as a boon in the long run. In creating a space of total isolation and loneliness, we're allowed to witness the full transformation of a traumatized (and, admittedly, thoroughly maladjusted) child into a young woman that doesn't have a grasp on the reality that exists outside her bubble of delusion. The meticulous nature of this slow burn story is an honest reminder that this is horror at its most human: this could easily be a reality for any of us.
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