USA, 2017 (MIFF 2017, International,North America)

Director: Ana Asensio


Winner of the SXSW Grand Jury Award for Narrative Feature, Ana Asensio's creepy debut takes viewers on a descent into a sinister New York underground where illegal immigrants are forced to play a dangerous game.

Making her writing and directing debut, Spanish-born, US-based Ana Asensio stars as Luciana, a young, undocumented immigrant scrapping for cash work to eke out a living in New York City. Enticed by a lucrative job opportunity from a model friend, Luciana soon finds herself caught in a seedy web of cruelty designed for the entertainment of rich New Yorkers.

Shot entirely on Super 16mm, Asensio's film cultivates a claustrophobic vibe, portraying a city riddled with tension that finds uncomfortable resonance in America's current political climate. The film's queasy set-piece climax is one for the ages, confirming Asensio's bona fide horror credentials (genre favourite Larry Fessenden produced and also cameos.)

'Most Beautiful Island is a powerful debut for Asensio.' – Bloody Disgusting

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