Review: Feminist horror ‘THE YELLOW WALLPAPER’ available today on Digital release.

THE YELLOW WALLPAPER

The debut film THE YELLOW WALLPAPER from creative duo—Alexandra Loreth and Kevin Pontuti—is a chilling and boldly original vision of madness. Jane, a writer and young mother, is prescribed a rest treatment by her physician husband John, who takes her to a remote country estate for the summer. She becomes obsessed with the peculiar yellow wallpaper in the bedroom he has chosen for her. In her isolation, she secretly writes about a woman trapped in the wallpaper—that she must free.


Opening with a disturbing turn, The Yellow Wallpaper is a slow burn horror about Postpartum Depression and gaslighting. New mother Jane and her physician husband rent a summer home in hopes of settling Jane’s nerves after giving birth. Jane becomes obsessed with the wallpaper in the couple’s bedroom. As her behavior becomes more and more erratic, she is less understood by all those around me. Perhaps, it is because they are not truly listening. 

The score from Robert Coburn haunts with heavy, ear-piercing strings, oboe, and maybe even bagpipe? I almost wish there were more music for me to contemplate. Era records, perhaps, to contrast such a purposeful and grating score. The slow, lingering closeups of the titular wallpaper are chilling. The costumes and set are outstanding. Bravo, to the hair and make-up team for their meticulous work. It did not go unnoticed. 

Alexandra Loreth evenly plays Jane with the nuance of PPD topped off with gaslighting. Postpartum depression was not yet a diagnosis in the Elizabethan era. Nor is it acknowledged as much as it should be today, quite frankly. Loreth’s voiceovers are a nice reprieve from the predominant silence. Her performance hits its peak as her isolation and writings increase. The faster editing and closeups help greatly. 

While the film opens with a bang, that same energy feels sapped in the one hour and forty minutes runtime. The Yellow Wallpaper would benefit from a 20 to 30-minute cut. I found myself glancing at the clock more than once. The final 20 minutes are, by far, the most intriguing. The variation and mounting intensity make The Yellow Wallpaper meaningfully upsetting. Loreth and director Kevin Pontuti penned the screenplay together. There’s a lot of depth and potential. You could easily make this a franchise with some tweaking. 


 

THE YELLOW WALLPAPER is a dark and disturbing contemporary adaptation of Charlotte Perkins Gilman’s well-known and controversial gothic feminist horror story about patriarchy and mental health. The film is a collaboration between partners Alexandra Loreth and Kevin Pontuti and stars Alexandra Loreth, Joe Mullins, Clara Hart, and Jeanne O’Connor. The film was written by Alexandra Loreth and Kevin Pontuti and directed by Pontuti. THE YELLOW WALLPAPER has a running time of 99 minutes and will not be rated by the MPAA. The film World Premiered at Cinequest followed by a successful festival run. Mutiny Pictures will release the film on March 29.

Review: ‘#LIKE ‘ will shock you to your core.

Synopsis
Woodstock teen Rosie (Sarah Rich) is mourning the first anniversary of her younger sister Amelia’s death, when she discovers that the mysterious man (Marc Menchaca, ALONE, “The Outsider”) who sexploited and bullied her sister into committing suicide, is back online trolling for new victims. After the authorities refuse to get involved, Rosie discovers a darker side she never knew she had as she takes justice into her own hands.
Rosie is trying to figure out who is responsible for the death of her sister, Amelia. A year afterward, she is obsessed with watching her old YouTube diaries for any sort of clue. The darkest side of the internet comes to light in this unapologetically raw indie. We live in a world where a single tweet can incite violence. But since the beginning of the internet and chat rooms, pedophiles have stalked kids, acted like peers, and lured them into unsafe situations. People don’t seem to grasp the permanence of posting online. The consequences can be life-altering. #Like delves into all these things and in the #MeToo era. Writer/director Sarah Pirozek gives us a revenge thriller that will punch you in the gut.

Marc Menchaca stars in another unsettling role, post ALONE. Here, he is allowed to explore the nuances of his own fear. He is captivating to watch. Sarah Rich is outstanding. You are rooting for her every step of the way. You live in her anger and grief. She gives a fearless performance.

#Like a great companion piece for Promising Young Woman and Hard Candy. The writing is fantastic. The complexity of this screenplay will blow any expectations you have out of the water. The scenes with her closest friends allow them to discuss toxic masculinity in an approachable way. Rosie is balancing teenage life with a vigilante life. She does the police work that the adults have stopped doing. We follow along with her investigation and remain on pins and needles as she digs deeper. Her boldness steers the emotional journey of the viewer. You will not see the twists coming. And that spotlighted song choice? Let’s just say it perfection in its skin-crawling nature. #Like is shocking and brilliant. You’ll walk away slightly traumatized. People will be talking about this film for a long time.

#LIKE will be available on TVOD January 26, 2021 on iTunes,
Amazon Prime, Vudu, FandangoNow, and Microsoft Store
Running Time: 95 min
Country: USA
Language: English