The world’s a stage for Ivy—there just aren’t many people seated in front of it. Struggling to establish herself as a singer, she collects humble checks while bouncing around various New Orleans lounges and bars and crooning with her silky-smooth voice for minimal amounts of liquor-sipping patrons. But those meager paydays aren’t Ivy’s toughest battle. That’s reserved for when she’s home alone, which is when her physical insecurities overwhelm her and she succumbs to a debilitating eating disorder. Keeping her battles a secret has its consequences. Ivy is now transforming into something nightmarish. And it may be too late to reverse course.
Shapeless, a remarkably confident and unique genre work, marks the head-turning arrival of first-time feature filmmaker Samantha Aldana, as well as her close collaborator Kelly Murtagh, who wrote the script, produced and stars in the film. Pulling from deeply personal places, they’ve delivered an achingly intimate character study that doubles as a haunting, body-horror-minded examination of women’s body issues unlike anything the horror genre has seen before. —Matt Barone
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Samantha Aldana is an award-winning director and writer. Her work is influenced by the storytelling traditions of her multicultural upbringing in the south and Caribbean. Samantha is an alumni of The Gotham, Tribeca Film Institute Network, Emerging Voices, and NBC’s Diversity Director Program. She holds a bachelor’s from Columbia College Chicago.