Elton never got over the death of his then four-year-old sister Ayla. Thirty years later he's still obsessed with her, even hallucinating her presence watching him as he has sex with his girlfriend Alex. He finds a pod in the woods that hatches into a grown version of Ayla. A grown version with the mind of a child, one that he will have to educate and teach how to be human. None of this sits well with Alex or his family, especially his mother Susan who has to deal with her daughter's bizarre return. Can this end anything but badly?Written by
A wonderfully acted, deeply melancholic "what if?"
Ayla is a profound and mournful little film dwelling on loss, grief and mental illness. A man can have a supportive family, a girlfriend who loves him, and still be plagued by his own personal demons. Elton is obsessed with the life he never had with his sister who died tragically when she was four. This plays into his own mental health issues that cause him to self-harm. In a moment of bizarre fantasy he is able to will his sister into being. But how does this grown woman who has miraculously appeared in his life even know how to be his sister? Many of us think about those in our lives we miss or wish we could have known better but when death separates us, what is it that we're actually bringing back?
This is a low budget movie funded through Kickstarter so don't expect grandiose special effects or lavish sets and settings. Instead you get a deeply committed cast willing to do what it takes to make these feel like real, sympathetic characters that you can relate to. Ayla is a film that is as much a family drama and a meditation on grief as much as it is a horror film. Much is left to the audience to interpret and figure out how they feel about what happens, it's taken me most of a week to be able to really process what the film is about in my own head. If you get a chance to see this on the festival circuit please do, you're not going to find much else at there quite like Ayla.
25 of 59 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this