‘She’s coming out of her shell’
Hatching is a 2022 Finnish coming-of-age body horror film about a young gymnast who desperately tries to please her obsessive mother. Having discovered an unusual egg, the girl hides it and keeps it warm. What eventually emerges is shocking beyond belief.
Directed by Hanna Bergholm – making her feature debut – from a screenplay written by Ilja Rautsi, the Silva Mysterium Oy production stars Siiri Solalinna, Sophia Heikkila, Jani Volanen, Oiva Ollila and Reino Nordin.
Twelve-year-old gymnast, Tinja is desperate to please her image-obsessed mother, whose popular blog ‘Lovely Everyday Life’ presents their family’s idyllic existence as manicured suburban perfection.
One day, after finding a wounded bird in the woods, Tinja brings its strange egg home, nestles it in her bed, and nurtures it until it hatches. The creature that emerges becomes her best friend and living nightmare, plunging Tinja beneath the impeccable veneer into a twisted reality her mother refuses to see…
“If the malformed aviary features are not bad enough, its eating habits will surely garner a reaction. Hatching does not rely solely on gross-out moments, however. The immaculate facade of Tinja’s home life is juxtaposed with the ugliness of Alli. It is jarring to transition from bright rose-filled gardens to a giant bird-like creature that hides under a bed.” AIPT
“I don’t recommend watching Hatching unless you can stomach horror and can handle watching something this unsettling. This one has some especially gross, extra weird, crazy-@ss sh*t happening in it – most of it involving the disgusting creature that hatches from the giant egg she nurtures. And the practical effects, the creature design, are extraordinary.” First Showing
“ …Hatching is diluted during a final act that can’t quite thread the needle between empathy and insanity. We already know that Tjina has hatched something crazy and nurtured it through some outsized emotions and adventures, but as that journey becomes more outward and tangible, that insular story grows into something less unwieldy, less exciting. Bergholm and Rautsi have cracked open a wonderfully weird story, but it can’t quite spread its wings the full stretch.” Indie Wire
” …Hatching happens to be the feature debut of Bergholm, who proves to be a filmmaker worth keeping an eye on. She handled the dramatic, satirical, and horrific moments of the story all equally well. With the help of production designer Päivi Kettunen, Bergholm also managed to capture a unique look for the film, dropping Tinja into a world put together to match Mother’s sickening view of floral-print-covered perfection.” JoBlo
“Bergholm and Rautsi fashion a somewhat predictable story, using the enormous bird (named Alli) as an evil twin conduit for Tinja’s darkest impulses, fears and even grudges. And they have ample twisted fun with the concept, as the young girl slowly grows aware of her own scores to settle.” Variety
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