By Pearl Tizzie
Trim Season is a folk horror movie set on a marijuana farm in North California.
Emma (Bethlehem Million – Sick, and Just Like That) is struggling with rent and a broken down car and other financial pressures. After being fired from her job Emma reluctantly takes a chance on an opportunity for short-term work that promises lucrative pay by a friend of a friend at a bar.
This work might be the answer to her financial worries, and Emma reluctantly joins her friend Jules (Alexandra Essoe – The Pope’s Exorcist, Doctor Sleep) to meet the contact at a car park and go and work on a marijuana farm for the trimming season. Here they meet Dusty (Bex Taylor-Klaus – The Killing, Star Wars: Squadron), Harriet (Ally Ioannides – Parenthood), and Lex (Juliette Kenn De Balinthazy – Evil).
Emma’s apprehension may be unwarranted at first but slowly turns to fear as several events show the true nature of the farm on the hill. Horrific events uncover a more sinister nature to the fate of the workers.
Jane Badler (Neighbours, Mission Impossible), who also produces the film, stars as Mona, the lead villain. Mona is an endearing matriarch of the farm, however, has ill fated intentions for the fate of the trim workers. Mona is an enigma and is intriguingly endearing yet curiously creepy.
Setting the background for the witch-like evilness of Mona, it is not clear if the source of the evil is human, nature, ancient tradition, magic, or witchcraft. The background and history behind the horrific nature are semi-unrevealed. The film results in a violent blood bath with some graphic scenes, not for those with a weak stomach.
Trim Mountain addresses gender as a theme and effortlessly incorporates non-binary and transgender themes as central to the plot.
Emma has a chance to set up and stand up for herself or to yet again take the blame for others misdoings. This film is a story about identity, culture and tradition, and the ultimate sacrifice. The film plays on power and control and standing up for yourself.
The use of the scenery and sets is stunning, from rustic wooden cabins to views across the farm with sun shining through the leaves in contrast to the nighttime views of red light and treetops. Beautiful video storytelling by Director Ariel Veda.
If you enjoyed the Murder Mountain documentary Trim Season is one for you.
Trim Season is showing around the country at Monster Fest Cinemas from Saturday October 28, 2023.