British writer-director Deborah Haywood’s first feature Pin Cushion tells the story of a unique mother-daughter duo: two glittering misfits who are knitted together in a relationship that is as kitsch and comforting as it is suffocating.
Together, Iona (played with startling screen presence from newcomer Lily Newmark) and her eccentric single mum Lyn (Joanna Scanlan on top form) move to a new town in the Midlands. Iona is determined to reinvent herself at school and quickly jumps through hoops to befriend the popular girls. Meanwhile, Lyn, used to being her daughter’s best friend, feels left out and attempts to woo their neighbour Belinda by lending her a ladder. But Belinda really isn’t interested in making new friends…
As the fragile veneer of forced friendship slips, both Lyn and Iona find themselves seeking fantastical and fabricated alternative realities. In her first feature, Haywood turns the coming of age story upside down with dark and unexpected twists. Worlds that glitter and twinkle on the outside often mask the saddest truths.
Cast: Lead actress Joanna Scanlan moved to North Wales when she was three, where her parents later bought the Ruthin Castle hotel.
Director: Deborah Haywood
Editors: Nick Emerson, Anna Dick
Producers: Gavin Humphries, Maggie Monteith
Length: 82 min
Format: Check with distributor
Official Selection Venice Film Festival Critics’ Week 2017 – Opening Night Gala – World premiere
Official Selection Rotterdam International Film Festival 2018
Date: 13 July 2018
Achingly fragile and genuinely, preciously peculiar, British writer-director Deborah Haywood’s first feature “Pin Cushion” ambitiously examines the psychological damage wrought by bullying at all ages.’ – VARIETY
‘Todd Solondz couldn’t dream up characters as mundanely wicked as those that populate this film.’– PLAYLIST