NORTH BEND FILM FESTIVAL 2021 REVIEW: SUPERIOR

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SUPERIOR is a lovely little surprise! Director Erin Vassilopoulos has crafted an engaging thriller in a vintage 1980s wrapper — shot on 16mm film and immersed in bold colors and style.

On the run from her abusive husband, Marian (Alessandra Mesa) arrives on the doorstep of her twin sister’s home. Having been separated from Vivian (Ani Mesa) for over six years, the twins have a large rift to heal — and their opposites lifestyles, along with Vivian’s disapproving husband make reconciling a difficult task.

Marian is wild and untamed; the cool girl who plays guitar and sings in a band, smokes obsessively, and does what she wants. By contrast, Vivian is the buttoned-up one; in control and settled, living the perfect suburban housewife life. Yet each twin is hiding the truth from each other — neither one of their lives are as idyllic as they appear.

Once reconnected, the twins begin to pretend they’re each other, with each getting a taste of what the other’s life is really like. As Marian’s husband gets closer to finding her and the danger mounts, they each lose themselves in the other’s identity and have to find a way back to each other in order to survive.

Real-life twin sisters Alessandra and Ani give this film an extra layer — at times I wasn’t sure which one was which — and the 1980s vibes made the whole film seem like a Twin Peaks episode (I kept expecting Leland Palmer to pop up at Vivian’s house). It’s not exactly a horror film, and might be a little too stylistic and arty for some, but I really dug it.

Streaming now, or watch it in person July 18th, 1:00 PM @ North Bend Theatre.

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