Pin Cushion

Great Britain 2017. Dir: Deborah Haywood. 82 min. DCP

VANCOUVER PREMIERE! Eccentric single mother Lyn (Joanna Scanlan) and her gawky teenage daughter Iona (Lily Newmark) have always spent every spare minute together — they even share a bed — until a move to a new town challenges their cozy insularity. Craving independence, unsophisticated Iona tries to fit in with the popular girls at school, but soon becomes the victim of their increasingly cruel bullying. Lyn also attempts to make friends, but her painfully awkward attempts are met only with dismissive scorn. As mother and daughter pretend to the other that everything is just fine, each retreats into elaborate fantasy worlds — illusions that will be destroyed as events take a horrifying turn. “Achingly fragile and genuinely, precociously peculiar … Pin Cushion ambitiously examines the psychological damage wrought by bullying at all ages, admitting the painful truth that for some of those mean girls and their beleaguered victims, growing older does not mean growing up” (Guy Lodge, Variety)

Advisory: Film contains a scene in which an act of suicide is implied.

Post-screening discussion with Dr. Tyler Black, medical director of the Child and Adolescent Psychiatric Unit at BC Children's Hospital. Dr. Black has developed clinical and organizational expertise in emergency psychiatric interventions, and lectures on suicidology, the impacts of digital media on children, pharmacotherapy, and science-based psychiatry.

Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky, Clinical Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of British Columbia.

 

REVIEWS

NYT Critic's Pick | "British director Deborah Haywood digs into her own teenage memories and unearths something eccentric, tragic and utterly unclassifiable."

New York Times | full review