Directed by Hanna Bergholm
Starring Siiri Solalinna, Sophia Heikkilä and Jani Volanen
I have friends who dont “get” Horror films.
After years of explaining why horror films are an important form of art, I’ve truncated my standard long-winded explanation down to this: “Good horror films take otherwise banal stories about human struggles and tell them in a visceral, exciting way.”
Hanna Bergholm’s 2022 film Hatching is a great example. Would a story about a young girl coming of age in a time when her parents are more concerned about the perception of well being than actual well being normally be interesting? Maybe, but it’s a subject matter that is one pregnancy away from becoming a Lifetime Channel film… the kind meant to coerce tears rather than thoughtfully allow its audience to feel the characters’ alienation and pain.
Alienation and pain feature differently in each of Hatching’s three acts. The film’s lead, Siiri Solalinna, takes us on an emotional ride with her character Tinja, whose interactions with her mother (played by Finnish TV star Sophia Heikkilä) constitute the majority of Hatching’s dialogue and tension. The otherwordly elements border on ridiculous but are tastefully brief, leaving the viewer in awe of what they’ve just witnessed and wanting more.
Hatching is one of those rare films I was able to witness with “Optimum Immersion.” I had no idea what was coming next, which is the best way to view any film and especially a film like this. To be truly horrified – and for the film’s analogy to the human experience to land square in the center of my mind – it was paramount that I didn’t have any previous knowledge about the story. To allow you the same great experience with Hatching, I will forgo my typical comparison to similar films and just say that Hatching is an A. See it the first chance you get, Horror film fan or not.