The Milk of Sorrow (La Teta Asustada) (2010) - Rotten Tomatoes

The Milk of Sorrow (La Teta Asustada) (2010)



Critic Consensus: Claudia Llosa's deliberate pace and abstract storytelling may frustrate some viewers, but there's no denying the visual pleasures soaking in The Milk of Sorrow.

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Movie Info

Director Claudia Llosa follows her award-winning feature directorial debut, Madeinusa, with this stark meditation on a grim period of South American history in which approximately 70,000 people were murdered between the years 1980 and 2000. Fausta (Magaly Solier) has fallen ill with a disease passed down from mother to daughter through breast milk. But Fausta's affliction isn't biological; it strictly affects Peruvian women who were raped or abused during those two terrible decades of persecution. While those days are long gone, Fausta stands as a living reminder of the horrors that once plagued her country, her malady a deep-rooted fear that stripped the young innocent of her soul. After Fausta's mother dies, the horrified girl is forced to confront her greatest fear by staring straight into the black heart of her own paranoia. Now, as Fausta sets out to discover her own path to freedom, she inserts a potato into her vagina in order to protect her body from unwanted intruders. ~ Jason Buchanan, Rovimore
Rating: Unrated
Genre: Art House & International, Drama
Directed By:
Written By: Claudia Llosa
In Theaters:
On DVD: Dec 7, 2010
Box Office: $10.4k
Olive Films - Official Site

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Karla Heredia
as Severina
Marino Ballón
as Tío Lucido
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Critic Reviews for The Milk of Sorrow (La Teta Asustada)

All Critics (38) | Top Critics (9)

The metaphors are so crystal-clear and the story unfolds at such a deliberate, often infuriatingly slow pace that the impact of the drama is muted.

Full Review… | September 2, 2010
Los Angeles Times
Top Critic

Claudia Llosa, the director and co-writer, favors wide shots and long takes, which lend an air of realism to the beautifully shot allegory.

Full Review… | August 27, 2010
New York Post
Top Critic

The Milk Of Sorrow is about a country dealing with old wounds and old divisions, and it's about how sometimes it can be easier to cling to pain than to move past it.

Full Review… | August 26, 2010
AV Club
Top Critic

Trauma is buried and rarely alluded to in this quiet slice of magical realism -- but there's no denying the pain when it comes.

Full Review… | August 25, 2010
Time Out
Top Critic

The movie, which won the Golden Bear at the 2009 Berlin Film Festival, is littered with unforgettable images of incongruity, destruction, and, finally, healing.

Full Review… | August 24, 2010
Village Voice
Top Critic

Ably gives voice to a period in history almost completely invisible to the world at large.

Full Review… | June 20, 2015
Antagony & Ecstasy

Audience Reviews for The Milk of Sorrow (La Teta Asustada)


A poignant allegorical drama centered on the belief that the trauma experienced by the many women raped during the years of terrorism in Peru has been passed on to the following generations, and it relies on a beautiful performance by Magaly Solier.

Carlos Magalhães

Super Reviewer

A Peruvian girl believes that her raped mother's sorrow was transferred to her through breast milk. That intriguing premise is somewhat wasted in a slow and drawn out tale of the girl trying to raise money to bury her mother's corpse in her native village; it's most interesting for its peek at Peruvian folk beliefs and customs, including an unusual use for potatoes.

Greg S

Super Reviewer

The Milk Of Sorrow develops a complex story of abuse and recovery inspired by the events in Peruvian history circa 1980 to 1992 with aesthetic and metaphorical dimensions. Poetic writing, lush photography and a telling cinematography of rich local Peruvian colors.

Jan Marc Macababayao
Jan Marc Macababayao

Super Reviewer

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