My Animal

Director: Jacqueline Castel
Screenwriters: Jae Matthews

Institute History

  • 2023 Sundance Film Festival


Tamped down by an oppressive family dynamic orbiting around her alcoholic mother, kept on the sidelines of the hockey team she yearns to join, and imprisoned in her own home each full moon, Heather is in a struggle for her life against the constrictive forces in her small northern town. When an intriguing figure skater enters the rink, Heather’s life, sexuality, and personhood are pried open. Jonny, played by Amandla Stenberg, and Heather, played by Bobbi Salvör Menuez, have bombastic chemistry that plays out on screen with attitude, style, and ferocity. Far from the typical werewolf story, Heather’s condition is one of many reasons for her outcast status. Luckily, Jonny is happy to join her on the outskirts.

Director Jacqueline Castel brings a new depth to a classic mythos with her energetic, luscious, romantic approach to My Animal. Beneath the surface of a harrowing family drama, a steamy teen romance, and a classic monster tale, Castel bolsters this genre gem with a tactile and emotional excavation of otherness. Ultimately a triumphant testament to self-acceptance, My Animal is a shackle-breaking watch.

Audience Advisory: This film contains strobe effects and may potentially trigger seizures. Viewer discretion is advised.

Screening Details


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