"I've been covering horror movies for a while now, and over the years I've noticed a lot of very interesting genre films about women -- that are also written and directed by men. That's meant as a compliment. Indie filmmakers like Paul Sole
t (Grace), Mitchell Lichtenstein (Teeth), and Lucky McKee (May, The Woman) are clearly and admirably fascinated by females who exist in an environment of dark fiction, but let's be frank here: there should be more horror films about women -- that are also written and directed by women. The dark and disturbing, yet oddly accessible American Mary looks like a firm step in the right direction. Written and directed by a pair of twin sisters from Vancouver, American Mary is easily one of the most fascinating female-themed horror stories of the past few years, and it should absolutely serve to open a few more doors for the audacious and plainly talented Jen and Sylvia Soska." - Scott Weinberg, FearNET (full article)
"All of which leads rather too neatly to the latest gory slice of body horror making shockwaves around the cinematic world, and having its Northern Premiere at Grimmfest: Jen and Sylvia Soska’s darkly funny and at times deeply disturbing di
ssection of the cult of beauty, cosmetic surgery addiction, body image and body modification, American Mary.
Combining the visceral physicality and ambivalent perspectives of Cronenberg or Barker, with a kind of raised-eyebrow archness and cold-eyed camp grotesquerie worthy of John Waters, and featuring a stunning, emotional powerhouse performance from Katherine Isabelle, already a Body Horror icon from the Ginger Snaps films, it tells the story of impoverished medical student Mary Mason, who gets pulled into the shadowy underworld of illegal body modification surgery after she performs a few questionable procedures for a local mobster.
The Soskas know their stuff.
The film explores every aspect of body horror head on: sado-masochism, fetishism, physical transformation, fear of sex, discomfort with one’s own appearance, loss of control. It might almost serve as a primer for a whole sub genre." - Steve Balshaw, Mancunian Matters (full article)
"American Mary is filled with splendid gore sequences, the odd humour and superb acting throughout. Ginger Snaps star Katharine Isabelle puts on a great performance in her role as Mary Mason and is still stunning as ever… The Soska sisters
seemed to convince viewers with this film how they are capable of making a truly entertaining and edge of your seat Horror flick. The Twisted Twins also make an appearance during the film, so keep an eye out for that…
The film is highly recommended to all viewers (except young children), as it is one of the most entertaining Horror films of 2012 along with The Cabin in the Woods and it will have something to satisfy almost any Horror fan. Humour, gore, Katharine Isabelle… What is not to like?" - Adam Chabbi, The Daily Horror (full article)
"American Mary isn't just the most startling and original horror film of the year, it's also a feature that announces the arrival of two very exciting talents to the genre in the shape of sisters Jen and Sylvia Soska." - Chris Tilly, IGN (full article)
"Katharine's character, Mary, was so compelling and the tone and production design of the film so distinctive (see it with a Goth chick you know, she'll love it), we liked it anyway and will definitely be checking out whatever Jen and Sylvi
a do next. The story focuses on the culture of underground body modification surgery, and thus a lot of the shocks in the movie were of the naked variety, including one (technically) full frontal shot of a woman who willingly had her nipples removed and vagina sewn shut to look more like a doll. Katharine’s non-nude streak continues, but considering she spends several scenes dressed in a corset, thigh-highs, and/or a latex apron, there’s still plenty to feast your eyes on here.
American Mary was definitely one of the more interesting Q&As we attended as Jen and Sylvia took the mic with co-star Tristan Risk wearing replicas of the (very revealing, by the way) ensemble Katharine wears in the film." - Skin Central, Mr. Skin (full article)
"But that was way back in 2010. What have they done for us lately? Many is the filmmaker that crashed and burned following a fast rise. Oh god, what if it was all a fluke?
Well, the Soskas are back with their sophomore feature, American Ma
ry, which had its U.S. premiere at Fantastic Fest last night. And I’m happy to report that the Twisted Twins’ success is no fluke. American Mary delivers the goods. It’s no Dead Hooker, but don’t despair; that’s a very good thing.One of the most impressive things about Mary is how completely different it is from the Soskas’ debut. Where Dead Hooker in a Trunk was a gonzo thrill ride, American Mary is a frosty revenge thriller — all warm, pulsing viscera beneath a cool, steely surface." -Theron Neel, Planet Fury (full article)
"AMERICAN MARY is a huge step fowards after DEAD HOOKER IN A TRUNK (which I am a big fan of), and not just from a budgetary standpoint, but from a confidence level displayed in the writing and directing by the twins. It portends even greate
r works of art from these powerful, creative, and risk-taking filmmakers." -Corey Mitchell, Bloody-Disgusting (full article)
"With American Mary, the Soskas present a unique canvas of surgical oddities and “freaks” not often seen on the screen, calling to mind some of the characters who would breeze through Nip/Tuck. However, the Soskas give them more purpose and heart than Ryan Murphy’s series did, creating a strong, eclectic gallery of personalities like Beatress (Tristan Risk) – a woman who transformed her visage to resemble Betty Boop and comes pretty damn close to stealing every scene she’s in.
Brian (Drive Angry) Pearson’s photography is gorgeous, shifting from one color palette to the next as we’re carried from Mary’s makeshift surgery room to the grungy environs of the strip club scene." - Ryan Turek, Shock Till You Drop (full article)
"With American Mary, the Sisters Soska definitively prove they’re more than just a pair of pretty faces by delivering a film that is not only a quantum leap from the previous feature but also, without getting to hyperbolic about it, representative of one of the most exciting new voices in the genre. Eschewing genre clichés and easy pandering, this sophomore effort delivers a textured, engaging and original effort that should deservedly break out amongst the horror faithful." - Johnny Donaldson, Geek League of America (full article)