The short running time of 77mins belies the amount of substance to be found within this movie.
Shot entirely in black and white, The Eyes of My Mother tells the story of Francisca, who lives on a farm with her mother and father.
Her mother is a trained surgeon and teaches Francisca to remove the cows eyeballs, a curious practice that Francisca adopts throughout the movie with questionable methods.
Their lives are turned upside down though when a door to door salesman, Charlie arrives at their house.
A struggle ensues that results in Charlie killing Francisca’s mother. Her father walks in on the act and over powers Charlie and chains him up in the barn.
As Francisca’s father becomes a shell of his former self, Francisca practically raised herself and constantly looks for the affection from her father.
Alone in the world, she spirals into a warped sense of reality where she removes Charlie’s Eyes and vocal chords and keeps him locked up as her ‘pet friend’.
When her father eventually passes away, Francisca becomes truly lost, preserving his body in the bath and reaching out for some sense of love and identity with the world.
It’s a beautiful shot piece with plenty of questions asked around nature vs nurture.
Are we the subject of our surroundings?
And because of this, there is genuine emotion attached to Francisca’s journey.
It packs a hefty punch which had been classed its graphic nature too hard to watch, but Nicolas Pesce’s directorial debut as a must watch and all eyes (hopefully intact) will be on his sophomore outing, Piercing, which is due out next year.
– Paul Farrell