Slimy cocoons, ant-infested crevices, slithering spiders and octopi populate the edge of the screen – and the protagonist’s vision – in Owen Long’s mind-blowing debut Seeds. Blink, and you’ll miss them – and that’s the whole point. The director shows remarkable restraint, and not just when it comes to creepy visuals, which helps enormously considering the highly controversial material. Owing as much to the works of David Cronenberg (see: Spider) as it does to Stanley Kubrick’s Lolita and Michael Cuesta’s L.I.E., this sexually-charged, nightmarish descent into dementia winds up being entirely its own entity.
“Haunted by demons – and flashbacks of a young girl – Marcus moves back to his family home…”
Long’s brother Trevor (known primarily for his role as Cade on Netflix’s Ozark) mesmerizes as Marcus, the deeply disturbed (anti) hero. Haunted by demons – and flashbacks of a young girl – Marcus moves back to his family home on the New England coast. His intentions are purposefully unclear: is he trying to exorcize/confront said demons, or surrender to them? Things get progressively more troubling. He watches his young niece Lily (Andrea Chen) through the window, and dreams of walking in on her taking a bath, his fantasies punctured by pitch-black visions of insects and mollusks.