After an intriguing prologue involving the murder of a scantily clad young woman wearing butterfly wings, the main story begins with the arrival of said murderer, Marcus (Long), at his family’s palatial New England beachside estate. He’s hoping for solitude, but must change his plans when his brother (Chris McGarry) arrives unexpectedly and asks Marcus to care for his teenage daughter, Lily (Andrea Chen), and her younger brother, Spencer (Garr Long), while he works out marital issues.
This sets the scene for slowly simmering erotic tensions between the pill-popping, clearly troubled Marcus and his nubile young niece, who seems determined to seduce him. That’s about it for the plot, with the film devolving into repetitive scenes involving Marcus’ disturbing interactions, some real and some imagined, with Lily. Meanwhile, his psychological deterioration is mirrored by physical manifestations of a giant spider, which at one point wraps its legs around Lily, and a tentacled creature that seems to be growing. The latter is foreshadowed in an early scene on the beach, where Lily picks up a seashell that contains a tiny animal that quickly withdraws its tentacles.
Metaphors abound, including the house being afflicted with bad electrical wiring that correlates with the lead character’s faulty mental processes. Needless to say, it’s not at all surprising when an elderly supporting character goes into the basement to check it out and meets an untimely end.
Senior Lecturer in Natural Resources and Development, University of East Anglia
Jill Joyce, Oklahoma State University
Professor and DST/NRF Bio-economy Research Chair, University of Cape Town
Curious Kids: where did the first seed come from?
Associate Professor, Fenner School of Environment and Society, Australian National University
James Boafo, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) and Kristen Lyons, The University of Queensland
Esther Ndumi Ngumbi, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Seedkeeping can connect people with their roots and preserve crops for future generations
Director, Centre for Australian National Biodiversity Research, CSIRO
Professor at Department of Biological Sciences, University of Cape Town