Earwig (2021, Lucile Hadzihalilovic)

House mostly bare, frozen teeth girl’s only toys are twists of paper

It’s 24 minutes before the first words are spoken: a phone call checking on girl and her teeth.

You must start preparing the girl to leave, in 13 days.
Caretaker Paul Hilton (Lady Macbeth) is to teach her how to behave outside.

Provoked by stranger at bar, he attacks Celeste with a bottle (Romola Garai: older Saoirse Ronan in Atonement). Laurence (Alex Lawther of The Last Duel) says he will take care of her. Movie follows the attacked barmaid as she recovers, Laurence invites her to live at his country house.

Guy comes and installs permanent glass teeth.

Caretaker embraces Celeste as she chews his face off.

Angelo Muredda in Cinema Scope:

Earwig resonates on much the same unusual frequency as Hadzihalilovic’s previous films Innocence and Evolution, which similarly engage the thematics of children on the way to maturity being dumped into strange institutional settings with cryptic rules seemingly designed to feed upon their bodies and souls. Viewed in this context, Earwig can easily be read as the payoff to an imagistic science-fiction triptych about the low-key horrors of parenting and being parented, and the ways in which assorted care homes and finishing schools maim the very children they try to shape.