Jennifer Reeder

Audience Award

Jonquil Baptiste (known as Jonny) makes a living from burglaries and petty crimes. Her single father suffers from a strange illness and neglects himself and his daughter, so Jonny is taken in by her eccentric aunt Hildie. On her 18th birthday, the ice-cold matriarch introduces Jonny to the supernatural legacy of the women in her family. A woman’s life is a bloody affair, and blood oozes, splashes and flows thick and dark red throughout this film.
At Jonny’s new high school, classmates have been disappearing .The girls band together, aware they can expect nothing from the adults. They are all dysfunctional, the men profoundly dislikeable – maybe they’re even perpetrators. The headmaster is a sadistic figure who regularly organizes killing spree exercises in which he himself plays the murderer. Using her feminist superpowers, Jonny sets out in search of the missing girls. As Reeder puts it: »I had this idea of making something that started off with a ›wild‹ and ›out of control‹ girl who really becomes wild and out of control.« As in all of her films, Reeder’s unconditional sympathy lies with the teenage girls. And a direct line runs from White Trash Girl, her first short film, to this queer-feminist mix of body horror, gore and thriller.

Guest: Jennifer Reeder

Content note


Jennifer Reeder


Sevdije Kastrati


Justin Krohn


Nick Zinner


Kiah McKirnan, Alicia Silverstone, Christopher Lowell, Melanie Liburd, Ireon Roach, Casimere Jollette, Sasha Kuznetsov


Divide/Conquer, Gregory Chambet – WTFilms, Shudder, Derek Bishé


Mary Kay Cook


Lighthouse Home Entertainment


Portrait of Jennifer Reeder

Jennifer Reeder

Jennifer Reeder is a filmmaker and visual artist as well as associate professor and director of graduate studies at the School of Art at the University of Illinois in Chicago. She received a Master of Fine Arts from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 1996. She has been repeatedly nominated for the Rockefeller Grants for Film/Video/New Media. In 2001, she was also nominated for the Louis Comfort Tiffany Award for Visual Art and the Richard H. Dreihaus Foundation Award. She lives in Chicago with her children. Reeder speaks with deeply feminist conviction about trauma and overcoming trauma. Her award-winning work has screened internationally, including at the Sundance Film Festival, the Berlin Film Festival, Tribeca Film Festival, the Rotterdam Film Festival, the London Film Festival, SXSW, Venice Biennale and the Whitney Biennale.

Films by Jennifer Reeder (selection)
Knives and Skin 2019 | Crystal Lake 2016 | Blood Below the Skin 2015 | A Million Miles Away 2014 | And I Will Rise If Only To Hold You Down 2012 | Tears Cannot Restore Her: Therefore, I Weep 2010 | The Heart and Other Small Shapes 2006 | White Trash Girl 1995