Belladonna

1989, 12:08 min, color, sound

Belladonna is a brutal testimony of violence and the family. A series of actors, presented as "talking heads," recite chilling lines that accelerate into a horrifying litany, a twisted family romance of child abuse and male violence. At the tape's end, these statements are revealed to be culled from convicted child murderer Joel Steinberg, Nazi "death doctor" Joseph Mengele, and case studies from Freud's classic A Child is Being Beaten. The narratives of child abuse are intercut with the paintings of Ida Applebroog, who is Beth B's own mother.

Featuring: Ida Applebroog, Jonathan Auerbach, Todd Ayoung, Rafic Azzoury, Beth B, Martina Baton, Mary Druid, Gideon Horowitz, Jonas Mekas, Sebastian Mekas, Ulli Runkus, Judith Solodkin, Humboldt Strait.