Born of Woman
- 110 mins
A new Fantasia short film showcase, BORN OF WOMAN presents a powerhouse collection of intimate, auteur genre works centered largely around themes of the body and interpersonal malaise. The filmmakers you will encounter here are exciting, essential new voices that we cannot wait to introduce you to.
From the USA, the eerie VENEFICA (International Premiere) introduces us to a young modern-day witch as she embarks on a difficult rite of passage to learn whether her abilities are destined for good or for evil. Winner of four awards on the US festival circuit, VENEFICA’s uneasy charms herald an extraordinary debut for Director/Writer/Producer Maria Wilson, who also stars.
Dianne Bellino’s THE ITCHING (International Premiere) is an unsettling and personal work, told via startling use of clay animation, in which a timid wolf tries to connect with a hard partying group of outgoing bunnies. She finds her body overwhelmed with an unbearable itch that threatens to consume her. THE ITCHING premiered at Sundance where it won a Women in Film grant and has since gone one to win “Best Animated Short” at the Sarasota and Athens Film Festivals.
Jessica Makinson’s SKIN (International Premiere) is a dark, kinky interlude from a brilliant debuting filmmaker in which an intimate gift arrives in the mail from a past lover, rekindling dormant emotions and impulses.
In Anna Zlokovic’s engrossing and eccentric SHORTY (World Premiere), Laura is the kind of woman for which no earthly word exists. Because she’s not of this earth at all. Part human, part something very other, she watches people from her apartment window to feel just a bit closer to those around her. Every now and then, her body strobes into a state nearing non-existence. It is in these moments that she’s forced to interact with the outside world.
A melancholic hairstylist takes things several steps too far with her last client of the night in Jill Gevargizian’s THE STYLIST (International Premiere), coming to Fantasia fresh off winning both Jury and Audience awards at the Etheria Film Festival.
Canada’s Tanya Lemke brings us STATIC (Quebec Premiere), in which an older man, devastated by the numerous passings of those dear to him, becomes fixated on preserving his dying tube-era television set. A tragic and haunting film, punctuated with eerie waves of surrealism that vividly announces the arrival of a major new Canadian talent while smashing your heart to pieces.
Germany delivers the darkly poetic stop-motion fantasy wHole (Canadian Premiere), from animation duo Verena Klinger & Robert Banning, in which a husband does everything he can to help his wife, born without eyes, gain an ability to see. Winner of a Silver Medal at JuFife Nurenberg and both the BDFA Gold Medal and Audience award at the Rostock Film Festival.
From Spain, Alice Waddington's breathtaking DISCO INFERNO is a visually astonishing hallucination of the occult that pays homage to expressionistic and serial horrors of the past while blazing its own hugely individualistic trail. A spellbinding award-winner at Fantastic Fest, Slamdance and Sitges.
Gifted Australian filmmaker Kaitlin Tinker’s enthralling THE MAN WHO CAUGHT A MERMAID (Canadian Premiere) is a fantastical and hard-hitting tale of an older fisherman obsessed with capturing – yes, a mermaid. This may sound funny to you, but trust us, you won’t be laughing. Winner of a Platinum Remi at Worldfest Houston.
For complete details on the films in this program, go here.
— Mitch Davis