April’s Daughter (Las hijas de abril)

APRIL’S DAUGHTER (Las hijas de abril) CWC D:.

APRIL’S DAUGHTER (Las hijas de abril) CWC D: Michel Franco. Mexico. 103 min. Sep 12, 7 pm, Scotiabank 2 Sep 14, 9:30 pm, Scotiabank 4 Sep 16, 9:30 am, Scotiabank 2. Rating: NNNN

This disquieting look down at motherly love gone to extremes is an object lesson in cinematic tonal control.

Director Franco doesn’t miss an opportunity to unnerve the viewer as he carefully builds his tale of maternal interference and possession, one frighteningly believable (if outrageous) step at a time.

In the beginning, Emma Suárez (whose subtle performance is the key to the film’s power) appears to be the model of a concerned parent. When her phone calls to her 17-year-old daughter go unanswered, she makes an in-person visit to Puerto Vallarta, where she finds her daughter pregnant and in a happy relationship.

That’s when the craziness begins.

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