I have the attention span of a fruit fly. The only way I can give full attention to a film is by going to the cinema. But at least I know and can fully admit I have a problem!
Watching “slow” horror is a struggle at home. But a film like The Last Thing Mary Saw demands full attention. It’s a quiet (literally) and soft film that’s equally filled with torture, pain and suffering.
Mary and her family’s maid, Eleanor, are in love. But it’s 1843 and a Puritan household, which makes for a dangerous life for the pair of young women.
When the rest of the family discovers their romance, the girls are both subject to a series of “corrections” to change their ways. Despite this, Mary and Eleanor cannot be separated. Especially since no other family will take Eleanor in.
As the girls become more desperate to be together, the film flicks forward in time to when Mary is being interrogated by several men. As the two timelines get closer to each other, it becomes very clear what sort of darkness the girls felt they needed to partake in.
The Last Thing Mary Saw is definitely more slow-paced than anything I’ve watched recently. But while it doesn’t necessarily have the action of an 80s slasher, it definitely knows how to build tension. There is a moment when it becomes very clear what is about to happen. The audience knows it, the girls know it, but watching it unfold is very tragic… And yet, it’s the circumstances that led the girls to their desperation.
If you’re looking for a queer film to watch for Pride that has a happy ending, don’t seek this one out. The Last Thing Mary Saw is a tragic horror story that won’t leave anyone feeling vindicated.