Starring Madeleine Sims–Fewer. Streaming at VIFF Connect until April 22.
Sexually explicit and unrelentingly gruesome, Violation is a movie about a woman working her way through trauma as methodically and horribly as possible.
Canadian filmmakers Madeleine Sims-Fewer and Dusty Mancinelli’s first feature—after several similarly intense, enraged short films—slips back and forth in time to show us the things with which Sims-Fewer’s tormented Miriam is trying to deal, asking us to wonder whether the nature of her response is really as disproportionate as it appears.
Violation is about the effort required to do the thing Miriam is doing, once she commits to it: how physically demanding it is, how miserable it is, and how it isn’t the sort of thing one can just move beyond.
Sims-Fewer’s performance is a catalogue of damage: we watch as Miriam registers new levels of hurt and horror over the course of the film, and it’s like compound interest is accruing on her soul.
You can find the specifics in any number of reviews from its film festival screenings, but I’d recommend you go in with as little foreknowledge as possible.
Violation works best if you don’t know where it’s going; all you need to know is that it won’t stop.