In the cinematic world of SWALLOW, to eat, is to be consumed by more than just the viewer. For Hunter (Haley Bennett) is in a world of broad consumption. Here new husband comes from money. From the exterior her life looks perfect but the dynamics are off. She has just found out she is pregnant and her husbands family is thrilled. But she starts to see faces mounting pressure from her domineering husband and his family to play the role of the dutiful wife. The child needs a home but one that replicates here husbands own. And so Carlo Mirabella-Davis takes us into the world of Pica, an eating disorder where the sufferer consumes odd objects such as pins, batteries and marbles. Though to be honest what is actually happening is far more to do with Hunter (played with detached intelligence by Bennett). For she is able to control her consumption and as such, control her body like no other. When she has to be operated on to remove something from her dietary tract, it brings her into conflict with her family.

Now at this point, I will stop the extraction of the story and instead speak about this release from Second Sight for SWALLOW. The film itself is not a Hitchcockian thriller in any sense, more it is a modern drama and a comment on consumer culture in the aspiring (read rich in money) classes. The disc does a good job in extrapolating this. Alexandra Heller-Nicholas, who is the new darling of Second Sight and Extras culture, impresses again with a clear minded discussion on the films ideas of space and control. Equally rich are the interviews with Carlo Mirabella-Davis and Mollye Asher. Both engage with the films ideas but also discuss the films direction. Framing the production as a desire piece of talent and challenge. With a film that served the cast and the direction/ production team.

I felt saddened that we lost the leads voice in the film, as the final act is so clearly her film. Totally though, this is both a film of great power and a release of skill, depth and richness.

Special Features 

  • New audio commentary by Director Carlo Mirabella-Davis and Producers Mollye Asher and Mynette Louie
  • A Personal Story: a new interview with Carlo Mirabella-Davis
  • Something Bubbling Underneath: a new interview with Mollye Asher
  • The Process: a new interview with Editor Joe Murphy
  • Metal and Glass: a new interview with Composer Nathan Halpern
  • A Room of One’s Own: Alexandra Heller-Nicholas on Swallow
  • Knife Point: a short film by Carlo Mirabella-Davis
  • English subtitles for the hearing impaired

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