A young woman with dangerous powers escapes a mental asylum and lets loose on the seedy neon-lit streets of New Orleans in this mind-bending fantasy-adventure from the director of A Girl Walks Home Alone at Night (NZIFF 2015).
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“At first glance, Mona Lisa looks like she wouldn’t hurt a fly. But appearances can deceive. Mona has a very special gift – the psychokinetic ability to control the actions of others. Using her lethal powers of persuasion to escape the psychiatric facility in which she has been locked up, Mona flees to New Orleans where she meets street smart-stripper Bonnie and her wise-beyond-his-years pre-teen son.
Excited to exploit her new friend’s talents, Bonnie convinces Mona to swindle the skeezy punters at her strip joint out of their hard-earned dollars. But the pair best beware – although they’re raking in the cash, the police are closing in. With its down-and-dirty punk charm, Ana Lily Amirpour’s wickedly subversive, adult fairy-tale is a truly wild ride, bursting with wit, imagination, and perhaps most surprisingly, a huge beating heart.” — Michael Blyth, London Film Festival 2021
“Mona Lisa’s mash-up of genre influences feels refreshing, occasionally even exhilarating, especially when the killer electronic score kicks into gear… Amirpour always gives us something to look at too: the colours pop… Through the lens of Hereditary cinematographer Pawel Pogorzelski, New Orleans is a goldfish bowl filled with lost souls on one final bender.… It’s irresistible fun.” — Phil de Semlyen, Time Out