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Indie darlings Christopher Abbott and Mia Wasikowska star in a bruising psychosexual fetish thriller from the minds that brought you The Eyes of My Mother (MIFF 2016).

Comedy doesn’t get much darker than Piercing, a wildly inventive and confronting feature that tackles subjects like abuse, sex and violence with a kinky S&M twist. Piercing begins with Reed wielding an icepick over the cradle of his newborn child, but he soon realises the best way to exorcise his demons involves a plan for dismemberment and so books a sleazy hotel room and a call-girl named Jackie.

Adapted from the novel by Ryū Murukami (who also wrote the beautifully twisted novel that Takashi Miike’s Audition was based on), Piercing is a suitably macabre exploration of male and female relationships. With a variety of stylistic tricks up his sleeve including split screens and a soundtrack of pop songs, Piercing is a bold new work for director Nicolas Pesce. A physically and emotionally violent clash of two souls where the blood flows in unexpected ways.