The Untamed (La región salvaje) (2017)
Critic Consensus: The Untamed attempts some ambitious tonal juggling between fantastical and disturbing -- and draws viewers in with its slippery, inexorable pull.
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Critic Reviews for The Untamed (La región salvaje)
[Amat Escalante's] film may lack the subtlety of Val Lewton's famously allusive RKO chillers, but there's the same sense that the shadowy rooms braved by the characters are no less than the human psyche itself.
An explicit and excoriating story of eros unmoored and unmooring - the devastating power of sexual pleasure when it's stripped of both function and meaning.
Escalante draws remarkable performances out of his cast of mostly newcomers in this film about the consequences of pleasure and the many meanings of flesh; where animal intelligence fills the void left by emotional disconnect.
The unsure approach to rich material (based on a story about a newspaper's homophobic coverage of a drowned man) mixes the sexy and grotesque - and cancels each other's good parts out.
...a fantastical premise collides with Escalante's solemn realism, making for a quiet, unforgettable mash-up, inspired by director Andrzej Zulawski's Possession.
Audience Reviews for The Untamed (La región salvaje)
I didn't know what the hell I was getting into at the time though, I found this film to be a weird combination of family drama with an H.P. Lovecraftian intersection into the narrative. While not some straight up creature feature, it's that explicit image that's going to stick to people's minds when they watch this film. Forget that tentacle scene in 'Rogue One' that felt unnecessary, here it plays an important part in underlining the central subject matter of either helping out one with their social problems or being a strange source of their destruction since it came from an unusual origin that not all surprising. It was mostly a well crafted film with some great cinematography showcasing the outskirts of Mexican society in the countryside. As was the written aspect of the mystery underling in the drama of it's character's, audiences are forcefully invested in. You this certain something exists and there's proof throughout the film to reveal why, though the pacing is slow and the film doesn't offer a lot of thinking power to initial plot progression. Why you may forgive the film for it's flaws, it's nonetheless a weird fascination of the unknown interrupting our daily lives, recommended purely for those who love the weird underside of life.
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