MOTHERLY (Dir. Craig David Wallace) (81 mins)
Single mom Kate will do anything to protect her daughter Beth from a dark and disturbing past that haunts them both. They have started a new life in an isolated farmhouse in the middle of the woods, far from the prying eyes of other people. Over the course of one day, Kate begins to suspect that something sinister is happening around them. As the danger becomes clear, Kate’s motherly instincts are put to the test. How far will she go to protect her daughter?
Kate is reliving an unthinkable nightmare after her neighbor’s daughter was killed inside her house on her watch. Now in witness protection, something is stalking Kate and her child, Beth. What follows is the unraveling of truth, and it’s far scarier than fiction.
Performances across the board are phenomenal. Tessa Kozma plays Beth with the energy of a spoiled 9-year-old. She’s ungrateful, rude, and perfect in this role. Lora Burke as Kate hits it out of the ballpark. She reached every emotional high and low, proving a mother’s love is boundless. Bravo, to Kristen MacCulloch and Nick Smyth as grief-stricken parents at the end of their rope. They give very different but nuanced performances.
Motherly is a visceral form of physical and psychological torture. It chills you to the bone. The script’s structure is in a manner that constantly keeps us guessing. The facts roll out slowly. The score is eerie, with breathy and repetitive voices overlapping the genre-familiar strings. Director Craig David Wallace, who co-wrote the script with Ian Malone, gives us a twisted home invasion teeming with mystery. Motherly is a tale of revenge, lies, grief, and obsession.
You can check out the second half of BLOOD IN THE SNOW (2021) in person
November 18-23 at The Royale Theatre