Saturday, September 29, 2012
Saturday, September 15, 2012
A taxi is stolen and driven to Rectum when the driver refuses to take them. He is beaten and taunted with racial slurs by Marcus, while Pierre unsuccessfully attempts to reason with his friend.
Marcus, now joined by two other men, violently coerces La Tenia's identity and location out of a transsexual prostitute while Pierre, again, unsuccessfully pleads with his friend to stop.
The two men leave a party and see Marcus's girlfriend Alex (Monica Bellucci) on a stretcher, badly beaten. Marcus is overcome with grief, and then rage. Two men come up to him and tell him they can find out who committed the assault.
Alex leaves the same party and takes a subway tunnel home where she sees a pimp beating one of his prostitutes. He notices her, the prostitute runs away, and he rapes and beats Alex in an unbroken nine-minute scene, the only scene in the film with a stationary camera.
A wild drink-, dance-, and drug-fueled party rages. Alex and Marcus have an argument and she decides to head home alone.
Alex, Marcus, and Pierre ride the subway to the party and have a long conversation about sex.
Alex and Marcus lie on a bed, naked, after sex. They tease each other, talk. They're at ease with each other. Pierre, Alex's ex and good friend to Marcus, is coming by in 30 minutes to go to the party with them.
Alex finds out she's pregnant.
Alex lies peacefully on a blanket at a park. The camera pans up into an overhead shot of Alex on the blanket and continues to move upward until we're in space. The screen fades to black and then toggles from black to white in an epileptic-fit-inducing strobe effect.
And that's it.
Maybe I'm looking at it all wrong. Maybe it's not an either/or proposition and the film is both complex and adolescent. I did get a sick energetic jolt from the murder scene. I find movie violence an expressive visual tool and a cathartic outlet for my own stress, but maybe some other creep is getting the same jolt from the rape scene. I don't get any catharsis or pleasure out of sexual violence, but I'm sure some audience members love seeing the stunningly beautiful, voluptuous, famous, and wealthy Bellucci getting hers, albeit in simulated form, though the scene, whether you find it offensive or necessary, is clearly orchestrated to put the viewer in Bellucci's character's place. The film also seems to condemn revenge, a concept too many people, particularly Americans, disturbingly value.
Saturday, September 1, 2012
Miss Giddens arrives at the estate and meets the housekeeper and the young girl Flora (Pamela Franklin, who grew up to star in another great haunted house movie, The Legend of Hell House).The little boy, Miles (Martin Stephens), is away at boarding school, but he soon arrives after being expelled. Miles is a great character and Stephens plays the fuck out of the part. He's a little creep, a master manipulator, with great magnetic charm. He's an adult man in a ten-year-old's body with an inappropriate sexual precocity and a way of talking to Giddens as if she were a woman he's trying to seduce. He's a little devil and he's hilarious to watch.