“Lilith’s Awakening” is a first feature film, a thesis project, from newly introduced Brazilian director, Monica Demes. Those words as I’m typing them out on my laptop screen still shock me; this movie was psychologically thrilling. Monica’s first showcase as a director blew my noir horror filmmaker mind out of the incredibly well shot and lit water.
This gorgeously filmed movie was the first feature that came out of the David Lynch MFA Program and I could not keep my eyes off of the screen. The sexual subtle nature of a traditional vampire story is slowly revealed to the viewer over the course of this film. The character, Lucy, played by Sophia Woodward, fights with her emotional nature in a sex-less marriage dreaming up a version of a violent vampire pipe-dream, involving biting of course. The movie in black and white amplified the dramatic texture to the film. Demes used some of the same techniques with lighting as “Suspira” (1977) and “Cat People” (1942).
With the mentorship of Lynch, Monica Demes has struck gold with a female horror Dracula flick. The cinematography by Gregor Kresal and Alfonzo James was a delight. They worked with shadows to create tension using the light versus dark shift with high contrast settings and they had a cast with a raw nature to them. Keeping a simple yet effective premise, “Lilith’s Awakening” is an emotional horror feature film I would watch again on the big screen.