122 Min. | Comedy – Drama – Thriller | December 2014
IMDB Rating: 8.1
Director: Damián Szifrón
Starring: Darío Grandinetti, María Marull, Mónica Villa
Wild Tales Review
If ordinary films are like novels, this one is like an exquisite collection of short stories. Wild Tales is divided into six segments, each with its own plot and character development. Director Damian Szifron is like a modern-day Guy de Maupassant, telling each story with meticulous accuracy, carefully measuring out each twist, detail and conversation. The segments are hilarious and over the top, but at the same time satirical and somehow realistic – the extreme events could happen to any of us. That’s why Wild Tales is such a great film, its shows the darkest side of human nature and of Argentinian society, but in such a way that it makes you smile.
The director claims the theme connecting the stories is ‘the joy of losing control’. It’s also the tag-line of Wild Tales, ‘we can all lose control’. Indeed, most of the segments are about losing control, although one is about keeping everything under control in a situation that can easily spin out of control. In any case, all segments are about individuals solving a conflict in an extreme way. In most segments, the solution is extremely violent or deadly. Although the trailer splashes out the name ‘Almodovar’ because Pedro and his brother produced Wild Tales, the style is by no means Almodovar-like. Szafron uses a sophisticated style, very different from the extreme cinematography we know from Almodovar. ‘Relatos Salvajes’ also surprises with original cinematographic gimmicks. In one scene, the camera is positioned in an overhead bin of an airplane.
In another, in the interior of an ATM, with the image filmed through the touch screen. Wild Tales is carefully constructed, with lots of little details. In one segment, about a man fighting the parking ticket bureaucracy in his city, we see the conspicuous towing trucks constantly moving through the image, as a sort of evil force. Once again, an Argentinian film maker pleasantly surprises moviegoers around the world. Maybe such wonderful, sharp-edged movies can only flourish in a country like Argentina, where life is a bit of a struggle and not everything is taken for granted. Overall, Wild Tales is an excellent film.
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