Greetings Loved Ones! Liu Is The Name, And Views Are My Game.
And I really don’t know what to say about today’s picture. I mean, from a structural standpoint, there’s nothing wrong with it. It’s cinematography is superb, it’s dialogue is all right, and it’s acting is certainly serviceable. On top of this, it’s made nearly ten times its $3 million budget, and it’s been praised by nearly every critic whose seen it. Hell, it was even nominated for Best Foreign Language Film at this year’s Oscars! And yet, despite all this, there’s still something deeply unsettling about Wild Tales, or as it’s known in the original Spanish, Relatos Salvajes.
For those of you who don’t know, this Argentine Black Comedy is an anthology of five unrelated stories, all of which center around the theme of revenge. Each of these vignettes is extremely violent, and each, as you might expect, is highly unpleasant. In one, for instance, a man’s car gets towed, and so, in order to get back at the towing company for forcing him to miss his daughter’s birthday, he blows up the building. In another, two men are driving on the road, one of them flips the other the bird, and then that man urinates and defecates on the first man’s car. And, well, it really only gets worse from there on in.
I suppose the intention with this film was to take regular situations that bother most people, and then blow them out of proportion for comedic effect, which, to be fair, does make sense on a certain level. If you’re audience can relate to the circumstances you’re presenting to them–if they’ve gotten angry at the tow truck company for taking their car, or any of the other scenarios explored in this film–they’re far more likely to react positively when you show your characters taking revenge on the people who have wronged them. But, I don’t know, I personally found these vignettes to be far too gruesome and mean-spirited, and not at all cathartic. I mean, it’s bad enough having to watch two guys get into an argument over a parking spot in real life. No one really wants, or needs, to see them kill each other for it on screen. That, in my opinion, is taking it too far, which, coincidentally, is pretty much what this entire film does–take things too far! It takes its anger too far. It takes its violence too far. It even, in some cases, takes its jokes too far–did we really need to see a guy shit and piss on another person’s automobile? I can understand why some people might be drawn to this type of film–it gives them an opportunity to live out the fantasies they have about getting back at certain people–but I personally found its bloodshed and crass humor to be far too exaggerated and extreme.
And that, loved ones, is why I think this film is worthy of a mere 6 out of 10. There’s nothing wrong with it from a pure filmmaking perspective, but, yeah, it’s far too unpleasant for me. If you’ve seen it, and disagree, please, let me know what you think in the comment section below.
Thanks, and have a nice day!