Little Joe. 2019. Austria/Great Britain/Germany. Directed by Jessica Hausner. Screenplay by Hausner, Géraldine Bajard. With Emily Beecham, Ben Whishaw, Kit Connor. 105 min.
Flowers make people happy, don’t they? Nothing unusual about that. But when a genetically engineered flower induces a stimulated happiness, it sets off a chain of unnerving events. Austrian director Jessica Hausner’s first English-language film takes us to a posh greenhouse where breeders race to create the next game-changing designer plant. This smartly dressed sci-fi/horror hybrid emits a constant stream of pollen and creepiness against a backdrop of stone-cold laboratories and scientists in various states of blissfulness. Emily Beecham won Cannes’ Best Actress award for her portrayal of a concerned breeder haunted by her own creation. Courtesy Magnolia Pictures.