Da 5 Bloods
On the Record
I May Destroy You
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the movie: litterally market itself around being mega gory and horrible to watch
also the movie : is actually good beyond the heresy
dumbass movie critics: "ThiS MoViE iS ToO gORy aNd HoRrIbLe to waTCh"
Let me preface this by saying, anything they can do to torture the viewer, they do it. The visuals will be etched into your head for a long time. That being said, if you're willing to test your comfort zone with your mind and stomach, go for it. You'll respect it or hate it. The first 40 minutes and the last few are so evil and twisted, but torture in between becomes too much. (A lot of people say torture porn and I won't argue there). Very uncomfortable watch, but an extremely intrepid concept that, if nothing else, is well-put-together
Absolutely torture porn this is Awful
One of the greatest horror movies ever! There's nothing else like it
During the early 2000's, a new wave of French movies brought a breath of fresh air into the horror genre, which previously was most famous of the slasher films and more recently because of the so called torture porn horror. However, the new French extremity movement provided horror fans with extremely violent character driven movies that stretched the boundaries of how far they could go within the genre. The fact that these movies supposed to be more character driven than the gore fest that Hostel (2005) and the Saw – franchise sequels were, got me intrigued. Therefore I decided to during this quarantine time to watch Martyrs as the director Paul Laugier stated that he got the inspiration of Hostel but wanted to put meaning behind the torture. Which got me even more intrigued as I was disgusted by the fact that torture was solely used for entertainment.
Without going into too many spoilers, the movie follows a young Lucie who escapes from her captures. When she is found it is evident that she has been brutally tortured which traumatizes her. While investigators try to figure out what happened to her, Lucie starts a strong friendship with another girl Anna. Several years later, the two girls seek revenge when they finally traced Lucie's tortures, not knowing what they bring themselves into.
Throughout the entire movie it is evident that Laugier knows the horror genre extremely well and is an admirer of the many sub – genres that horror has to offer. The introduction is shot in a found – footage style while also using elements of the haunted house genre. If you think that is already enough of a mash up of horror sub – genres, as the movie progresses, tropes from home invasion movies, psychological horror, creature movies, body horror and ultimately torture are cleverly used as well. And interestingly the mash up of all these tropes is never over used or too much which is by itself already an impressive achievement.
But these tropes are only stretches the surface of what makes this extremely effective. Throughout the entire movie there is a sense of helplessness, dread and indeed character driven storyline that keeps viewers on the edge of their seat, not knowing what is going to happen every time. I think that no one will criticize the acting, make up, setting and especially not the realistic special effects. All of these things are of high quality. The only thing, which can be criticized is the excessive violence and the fact that it tends to focus on only suffering.
Yes, the movie is extremely violent and becomes even more violent as the movie progresses. But with every plot twist, it becomes more clear that the movie actually tries to convince the audience that violence is never the answer even though some characters in the movie believe violence will lead to freedom, it is evident that this not the case all the way through the very end. And during the third act, brutal scenes are cut together as a blinking eye, involving the audience in the pain and suffering of the main characters which is, in my opinion the strongest part of the movie.
Unfortunately, after praising so many things of this movie, the director looses it a little bit towards the end. The way the director portrays a transformed ‘Martyr' is unnecessary and while this can be considered as yet another horror trope copied from torture porn, I think it does not have anything to do with the suffering and pain that is felt previously. While I was always feeling something throughout the movie whether it was pity, fear or pain, this sequence made me feel nothing at all. If that was the intention of the director, it worked, but looking at the movie as a whole, I would say it was a misstep.
Especially since the ending is one of the strongest endings I have ever seen in a horror movie. While many of the character arcs were completed already before the very last scene, the question whether violence will can be justified and if suffering is worth it still lingers. The answer the director provides us as audience is ambiguous and up to interpretation. Viewers can basically decide whether they want a optimistic answer or a pessimistic answer. While both can hold up, one of those is much more evident than the other.
Martyrs is extremely hard to watch because of its graphic violence, immense suffering and the overall depressing tone and subject matter. But if you want to be challenged and can sit through the entire movie, the ending will definitely work. It is not an enjoyable, rewarding or entertaining movie, but I think that is actually the point of the entire movie. It is literally a once in a life time experience that you will never watch again but also never forget. While I could say it is nearly perfect, the imbalanced third act does have some weaker points.
Man, this movie was dark, and I loved it. It goes in a lot of different directions and in a way each third almost feels like a different movie, but that helps keep it interesting. There's clear Hostel inspiration here, but the execution of Martyrs is honestly a lot better. There's a sense of hopelessness near the end of the film, which perfectly parallels the beginning in a satisfying way.
This film all feels very real, especially Lucie's flashbacks in the first half. The backstory is revealed at just the right time, and as soon as you think you know where the story is heading, it flips around and goes in a new direction. On top of all of that, the imagery is disturbing in just the right way and the camera work really makes you feel like you are experiencing the misery of the main characters.
Unfortunately there's some convenient exposition that could have been handled a bit more elegantly. Overall though, this is an excellent film that will certainly stick with you for a while.
Disgusting, awful, pretentious, nihilistic, repulsive, unwatchable, and trash are all words that can be associated with this film. The movie is only 1 hr 30mins long but I was checking my watch constantly because it was so agonizing to sit through. Just the worst seriously. I don't know how anyone can consider this entertainment. I loathed every minute of this retched bile put to celluloid. If I had time and a sledge hammer I would personally destroy every copy made. Literally do anything else with your time and it will be better spent.
It starts off with typical horror movie scares (monster under the bed in the dark, woman hurting herself when she thinks someone else is doin it). Then it turns very violent involving murdering children (again not sure why some horror films think this is acceptable esp the French films). The troubled heroine finally winds up killing herself and then the film shifts into more of a sci fi conspiracy. The second half is for sure more interesting, but it also doesn't really explain itself that well/isn't very believable. You don't really care for any of the characters. I just didn't find myself invested at all with the film as its tone shifted way too much and the story/characters seemed very fake. There isn't much dialogue and by the end of the film I didn't feel much resolution it was just meh- a mixed bag of torture horror with a somewhat interesting premise that ended with a cheap cop out of suicide ending. One time viewing is enough.
A great portrayal of physical and mental trauma and a bitting commentary on class differences make it worth watching, but its graphic violence and depiction of torture make it hard to digest.