This is a film about people who feel wounded by others and can not turn the other cheek. Vulnerable in the face of a reality that shifts and suddenly turns unpredictable, the characters of Wild Tales cross the thin line that divides civilization and barbarism. A lover’s betrayal, a return to the repressed past and the violence woven into everyday encounters drive the characters to madness as they cede to the undeniable pleasure of losing control. Most of them start with an event that we can all recognise as one that is a potential flashpoint but this film takes the reactions to the extreme. Some critics have compared them to the adult short stories that Roald Dahl wrote, early in his career.
The film is a portmanteau comprising six separate stories, a device often leading to disaster but, in this case, it is’ far superior to a curate’s egg’ for Peter Bradshaw of the Guardian. He sees it as a ‘rage at the complacency and mediocrity of Argentina’s ruling classes’. The film is presented under the Pedro Almodovar banner and one of the stories looks as if it was filmed in the aircraft set used in I’m So Excited, which was so well loved when we showed it in Wivenhoe a year or two ago. Mark Kermode has also invoked the films of Luis Bunuel as references for the director, who has done a wonderful job of directing the film, as well as writing the screenplay for six great stories.
The film was nominated for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year at the Oscars.
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Venue: William Loveless Hall