“Bibi” is a compelling psychological thriller that takes us on a journey through the troubled mind of a grieving mother. Directed and written by Christopher Beatty, the film weaves a complex narrative that defies traditional storytelling patterns, offering a fresh take on psychological suspense.
At its core, “Bibi” follows the haunting story of Vivian Ashwood (played by Elizabeth Paige), a woman burdened by a lifetime of grief, triggered by a tragic loss in her past.
As the film starts, we are introduced to the story of a woman descending into madness, plagued by visions that only she sees and that no one else believes. But as the story progresses, “Bibi” takes an unexpected turn. The movie delves into a multi-layered nightmare that keeps viewers guessing and not exactly sure what is happening or where the story is leading.
The majority of the film is set in the confines of an expensive estate. But Vivian’s external surroundings mirror her internal struggles. We see her struggle with emotional turmoil as well as with substance abuse.
A mysterious figure begins to stalk her, adding to her sense of unease. We are not immediately sure who or what that figure is and that becomes an essential part of the plot as the story progresses.
The film keeps a slow and steady pace that might seem like a drag. But the ominous feel adds to the intensity and uneasiness that you feel throughout the film. This seems to present the film’s biggest strength being that it is a psychological thriller. From that through to the end, you are kept unsettled and sometimes left confused. There are a few decent jump scares that sway the film a bit into the horror genre, but they are not significant enough to leave you scared to be in the dark by yourself.
Paige delivers an emotionally driven performance as Vivian. She seals the performance even her facial expressions and demeanour. Throughout the film, you can see and almost feel exactly the emotional state that Vivian is in. Tammy Blanchard also delivers an impressive performance in her supporting role as Nancy. She makes her character stand out and feel very essential to the story. Even though she is just existing in Vivian’s mind.
Another thing that works for “Bibi” is the element of mystery. You are slowly sucked into the plot and just like Vivian you find yourself looking for answers. The set design, lighting, and cinematography also contribute to the film’s unique feel and experience.
Beatty showcases his ability to construct scenes with his distinct cinematic language that sets the right tone for this thriller keeping you engrossed even when everything seems confusing.
But in essence, the film serves as an exploration of a disturbed woman’s mind, delving into her emotions and struggles as she tries to unravel the mystery of what haunts her. These themes are meticulously woven into the story, creating an emotional rollercoaster for the audience.
“Bibi” is not a film that would be easy to sit through for many, particularly because of the pacing and the narration style. Also, by the time it ends, it still has some questions unanswered.
It challenges viewers to piece together the puzzle of Vivian’s reality and confront the blurred lines between truth and delusion. But not every viewer would be up for the challenge or would have the interest to want to find all the answers.
Although the film’s conclusion ties up loose ends, there are lingering questions and angles of the story that keep the film on your mind even after it has ended.
I would score this film a 6.5/10 rating.
“Bibi” is a refreshing take on the psychological thriller genre. As a feature that introduces you to writer and director Christopher Beatty, it makes a strong enough statement.