It’s been quite a year for Norwegian filmmaker Eskil Vogt. Though Oscar-nominated for his co-writing work with longtime collaborator Joachim Trier on The Worst Person in the World, it wasn’t the only film he had at Cannes. He also debuted his second feature, The Innocents, which now arrives this May via IFC Midnight and takes a more grounded look at superpowers. His Blind follow-up tracks four children who become friends during the summer holidays and discover they have hidden skills, which takes a dark turn as strange things begin to happen.
As Alistair Ryder said in his Cannes review, “The Innocents, the assured sophomore feature from Eskil Vogt, is a prickly film about childhood morality designed to get under its audience’s skin. It quickly becomes apparent that the remaining unease has very little to do with the lingering effects of slow-burning horror, and much more with problematic casting choices that render the drama uncomfortable. It’s a shame as this is a confident effort, utilizing many of the same vague supernatural aspects as 2017’s Thelma (for which Vogt co-wrote the screenplay with frequent collaborator Joachim Trier) to tell a completely different coming-of-age story. It makes for an unsettling, more overtly horrifying companion piece, but one with too many noticeable flaws to properly escape from its shadow.”
Watch the trailer below:
The Innocents opens in theaters and on VOD on May 13.