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LIZZIE

LIZZIE

Craig William Macneill · USA · 2018 · 110 mins · 14A
IMDbRotten Tomatoes

A lesbian spin on the legendary Lizzie Borden murder case is nothing new, but the stylish and haunting “Lizzie” paints a provocative portrait of a woman driven by passions and left with few options in a society that gave her little agency.

In “Lizzie,” we come to know Borden’s inner turmoil in the way that the camera captures a bewitching Chloë Sevigny.

Screenwriter Bryce Kass and director Craig William Macneill are left to their own conjectures as to the how and the why behind the murder of Borden’s father and stepmother, but they’ve turned the puzzle pieces into a haunting, horrifying romance.

Six months before Andrew Borden (Jamey Sheridan) and his wife Abby (Fiona Shaw) faced that fatal ax — and despite the famous rhyme, each received far fewer than 40 blows — housemaid Bridget Sullivan (Kristen Stewart) reports for duty.

Right away, there’s an electricity between them. The unmarried Lizzie tests her father’s patience with her willfulness, daring to go to the theater unescorted and constantly questioning his authority. Andrew’s a monster — he visits Bridget’s room in the middle of the night to rape her on multiple occasions.

And on a hot day in August, Andrew and Abby will die in a murder that we see Lizzie commit, even though the courts never found her guilty. By the time she’s wielding the hatchet, Lizzie has become both avenging angel and mad warrior, both slasher and final girl, both Salome and the executioner of John the Baptist.

--The Wrap

"Ms. Sevigny’s intelligence and formidable control keep the melodrama grounded. Her empathy for Borden, whose fragile constitution belies a searing will, is palpable, as is the sense of inescapable peril surrounding the two female leads. " New York Times
"One thing’s for certain: Sevigny has been ripe for a juicy role like this for some time." The Guardian
Cast Kristen Stewart, Chloë Sevigny, Fiona Shaw
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