In ‘Saint Maud,' is a Visceral Psychological Horror
AppleMagazine|Feburary 12, 2021
Religion and horror are hardly novel bedfellows, but writer-director Rose Glass crafts something fresh of the construct in her promising debut “ Saint Maud.” The film follows the psychological undoing of a devout hospice nurse who becomes obsessed with saving the soul of her terminally ill patient.

An uneasy and slightly sinister mood is established right from the start and barely lets up for the duration. Lean and measured, Glass’ film drops the audience in the middle of a bloody mess, although it’s ambiguous at first as to whether or not we’re seeing the beginning or the end. There’s a body on an operating table and a young woman in the corner with her face covered in blood. The next image we see is a close-up of boiling tomato soup in a grim and claustrophobic studio apartment in the seaside hamlet Coney Island (in Northern Ireland, not New York). The woman there, Maud (Morfydd Clark), is packing up to leave.

The first words we hear from her are in voiceover. She’s not talking to us, but to God, wondering when she’ll find clarity of purpose. “I can’t shake the feeling that you must have saved me for something greater than this,” she says. Her musings often sound like diary entries.

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