In My Mother's Skin

Director: Kenneth Dagatan
Screenwriters: Kenneth Dagatan

Institute History

  • 2023 Sundance Film Festival


Philippines, 1945. Nearing the end of World War II, an affluent family lives stranded in their country mansion, tormented by the occupying Japanese soldiers who are losing grip over the island nation. Rumors spread that the patriarch, Aldo, stole Japanese gold and stashed it somewhere nearby. Aldo knows that his family will be slaughtered if they find the riches, so he escapes to seek help from the Americans. Soon they fear he will never return while sickness overtakes the mother. Searching for help, their young daughter, Tala, mistakenly places her trust in a beguiling, flesh-eating fairy, who desires to consume them all.

Writer-director Kenneth Dagatan imbues this ghastly fairy tale with an intriguing mix of Catholicism and Filipino folklore to conjure up a nightmare vision of a war-torn land. Dagatan’s cast fully commit to this dark fantasy, led by Felicity Kyle Napuli as our young heroine, and the divine villainess played by Jasmine Curtis-Smith. In My Mother’s Skin delivers on impeccable craft, fantastical special effects, and enough fly-covered oozing flesh to be seared permanently into your memory.

This film contains extreme violence and gore. May not be suitable for all audiences.

Screening Details

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