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Female Human Animal

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Shot in the real-life contemporary art world, 'Female Human Animal' is a psycho-thriller about a creative woman disenchanted with what modern life - and modern men - have to offer her.
In 2015, Tate staged a retrospective of the surrealist Leonora Carrington (1917- 2011), famously the lover of Max Ernst. Novelist Chloe Aridjis, who knew the artist from her native Mexico, was made guest curator of the exhibition.
Set between the real-life curation of the Tate show and something more fantasised, 'Female Human Animal' sees Chloe increasingly disappointed by the men in her world — and increasingly haunted by Carrington’s strange artworks. When an elusive, brooding man seems to offer more, Chloe begins to pursue him, but is she hunter, or hunted? Enabled by Carrington’s own defiantly mysterious mythology, she descends into a world of obsession.
Shot on a rare 1980s video camera with a uniquely lurid, nostalgic colour response, and deftly weaving fact and fiction, 'Female Human Animal' is a darkly romantic fantasia of a woman who goes beyond societal norms.
Featuring the Volksbuhne's Marc Hosemann, Patrick O'Kane and Angus Wright, appearances from arts and literary luminaries like Marina Warner, Adam Thirlwell and Tom McCarthy, and new music from OMD’s Andy McCluskey, 'Female Human Animal' also pays homage to its guiding spirit, the striking Leonora Carrington.


Type of film
Running Time
75 mins
Analogue Video formats
Josh Appignanesi
Jacqui Davies, Josh Appignanesi
Sam Dobbyn
Martin Macdonald
Josh Appignanesi, devised with Chloe Aridjis
Director of Photography
Tristan Chenais
Production Designer
Erik Rehl
Thomas Blazukas, Morgan Muse, Sam Boulton
Andy Cooke, Andy McCluskey
Principal Cast
Chloe Aridjis, Marc Hosemann, Patrick O'Kane, Angus Wright, Juliet Jacques, Phillipa Horan, Devorah Baum, Mark Greenfield, Dorian Ford, Adam Thirlwell, Stuart Home, Ariadne Arendt
Additional Cinematographers
Ben Barber, Richard Dunton, Michael Hobdell
Funded by
Arts Council England

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Last updated 23rd March 2018

Production Company

Jacqui Davies Ltd
85 Mallard Place
+44 (0)7711 416621

Josh Appignanesi