Jonny is tough, fearless and forthright. She picks locks with ease and seems to be able to take care of herself pretty well. She also slips rent money into her single father’s pocket. Their relationship is fragile and yet strangely symbiotic. Feeling overstretched, her father decides to send Jonny to live with a distant aunt. But even in the care of the strict Hildie, the teenager cannot seem to find peace. On her 18th birthday, Jonny is given a cake baked according to a magical family recipe which triggers a radical metamorphosis. At her new school, the constant killing spree-emergency drills create a tense atmosphere and soon five girls go missing. Inexplicably fascinated by their disappearance, Jonny sets out to look for clues and a blood-soaked coming-of-age story takes its course.
Jennifer Reeder’s new feature-length film is a dark, queer-feminist genre mix of body horror, gore and mystery. As in her earlier works, she looks at the world predominantly through the eyes of her young protagonists who, armed with biting humour and an unbroken sense of justice, manage to wrest moments of light-heartedness and solidarity from the twisted world of adults.
by Jennifer Reeder
with Kiah McKirnan, Alicia Silverstone, Christopher Lowell, Melanie Liburd, Ireon Roach
USA / France 2023 English 100’ Colour World premiere


  • Kiah McKirnan (Jonny)
  • Alicia Silverstone (Hildie)
  • Christopher Lowell (Principal Burke)
  • Melanie Liburd (Jean)
  • Ireon Roach (Elektra)


Director Jennifer Reeder
Screenplay Jennifer Reeder
Cinematography Sevdije Kastrati
Editing Justin Krohn
Music Nick Zinner
Sound Jason Culver
Production Design Adri Siriwatt
Costumes Kate Grube
Producers Derek Bishé, Gregory Chambet

Jennifer Reeder

Born in Ohio, USA in 1973, she graduated from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (SAIC). Her multi-award-winning feature films, which have screened at numerous international festivals, focus on stories about relationships, trauma and dealing with such experiences. In 2015, her film Blood Below the Skin screened in Berlinale Shorts; in 2016, Crystal Lake featured in the Generation programme.

Filmography (selection)

1995 White Trash Girl; short film 2006 The Heart and Other Small Shapes; short film 2007 Claim; short film 2008 Accidents at Home and How They Happen 2010 Seven Songs About Thunder; short film · Tears Cannot Restore Her: Therefore, I Weep; short film 2012 And I Will Rise If Only To Hold You Down; short film 2013 Girls Love Horses; short film 2014 A Million Miles Away; short film 2015 Blood Below the Skin; short film 2016 Marietta Brimble; short film · Crystal Lake; short film 2017 Signature Move · LOLA, 15; short film · Shuvit; short film · All Small Bodies; short film 2018 I Dream You Dream of Me; short film 2019 Knives and Skin · Huluween Film Fest: The Dunes; TV film · The Dunes; short film 2021 Forevering; short film · I Like Tomorrow; short film, co-director: Nancy Andrews · V/H/S/94; anthology film, segment: ”Holy Hell“ 2022 Night’s End 2023 Perpetrator

Bio- & filmography as of Berlinale 2023