While just about everything frightens me, horror films where everything seems normal but something is deeply wrong tend to scare me the most. It’s the sheer concept. A person (or place) looks and acts like they should but with a slight deviation that usually only one person picks up on. And often, nobody believes them—until sh*t hits the fan. Irish Folk Horror film You Are Not My Mother is the latest in this particular kind of horror movie. By the looks of it, the film pulls it off masterfully.
All is not well in Char’s household. First her mother goes missing. And then upon her return, she starts acting very strangely. Right before Halloween, no less. But if that isn’t enough to get the eerie vibes going, the unsettling strings haunting the trailer should do the trick.
That was an incredibly stressful two minutes.
Here’s the film’s synopsis:
It’s the week before Halloween. Char’s bedridden mother, Angela, has mysteriously gone missing. All that remains is her abandoned car parked in the middle of a field. When Angela returns home to their North Dublin estate the following evening without explanation, it becomes clear to Char and her grandmother, Rita, that something is amiss. She might look and sound the same, but Angela’s behavior has become increasingly erratic and frightening, as if she has been replaced by a malevolent force. As Halloween approaches, a night steeped in ancient Irish myth and legend, Char must unearth the dark secrets of her family in order to uncover the truth behind her mother’s disappearance and save her, even if it means potentially losing her forever.
The film weaves spooky Irish folklore into this fraught family dynamic. Specifically, given its Halloween setting, Samhain plays a major factor. Per Irish mythology, the Pagan festival, which marked the beginning of winter, is a time where souls of the dead could enter the world of the living. Obviously, this bit of Irish lore has a lot of potential for a good horror story.
Katie Dolan wrote and directed You Are Not My Mother, which stars Aoife Spratt, Ingrid Craigie, and Hazel Doupe. The film debuts in theaters on March 25, 2022.