Film Review: Sissy

While novels, film and TV often paint a utopian picture of childhood, in reality this is usually very far from the truth. Life is very far from the kind of idyllic playground depicted in much of classic literature. The same can be said for schooldays. Education is an experience which you either enjoy or hate, but it’s mostly those interactions outside of the classroom which stay with you. In Sissy, this trauma is never too far from the surface.

Growing up, Sissy and Emma were best friends who pledged to grow old and live in the same nursing home together. That was before Alex and friends arrived on the scene. Years later and Cecelia (Aisha Dee) is now a successful social media influencer, living the dream. This all changes when she bumps into Emma (Hannah Barlow). They reconnect and she’s invited to her bachelorette party. When Cecilia arrives she discovers it’s at Alex’s (Emily De Margheriti) home.

Sissy is a cleverly observed study of trauma, wrapped up within a slick and stylish slasher.  Writers/Directors Hannah Barlow and Kane Senes tackle the subject of bullying through the lens of Gen Z, building on the foundations of the genre whilst also having a lot of fun with it. The pacing and structure create a universe where Sissy can flourish. Using gore sparingly, but also delighting in it. It’s a bright and brutal bloodbath.

Sissy premieres on Shudder on 29 September.

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