We spoke with Sims-Fewer and Mancinelli on Zoom about their innovative take on rape-revenge film through their portrayal of PTSD, the use of male nudity, and the explicit rejection of female body objectification.
So [“Violation”] is part of this evolving rape-revenge canon. Were you interested in these films before working on the film? Is this something that you liked or that interested you?
MADELEINE SIMS-FEWER: I feel like I could never say I enjoy a rape-revenge movie, but it was definitely something that interested me. These are still incredibly difficult movies to watch and I think some of them are very problematic, but some of them are incredibly empowering. Maybe that’s not quite the word I’m looking for, but [they] to really give you that great cathartic release, especially as someone who has experienced trauma in the past. We’re both pretty open to the fact that this movie is a very personal movie and comes from a personal place for both of us. I think this is definitely something we were interested in before we made one.
DUSTY MANCINELLI: Yeah, I think once we know we’re going in that direction, you’ve got to force yourself to look at all the good and the bad, so you can know what you like and what you don’t. not like, and what you want to stay away from. So we were very aware of the construction of the film in this way. For example, knowing from the start that we didn’t want to fall into the trap of overexualizing the women in the film. We [wanted to] actually try to do the opposite and really do something new in this space.
MSF: While there are some great movies that propel you into the act of revenge, and then you get that amazing feeling of liberation and you encourage that person, we certainly didn’t want to do that. We really wanted to see what the effect of revenge would be on a person and see how they simply have the potential to unravel you and make that trauma even more serious.
DM: It’s almost an anti-revenge movie. This is not wanting revenge, because in this genre there is also something really problematic about this idea of someone who has been victimized like this can only be restored by killing the person who is giving them. did that. It really does seem like a problematic ideology that we wanted to move away from and instead focus on the real consequences of revenge, what it does to your morals and the relationships around you, as well as how it can really destroy the fabric of who you are.