The rich are free to do anything, at least the authorities will execute their clones

by time news

2023-09-22 19:32:33

For more than ten years, Brandon Cronenberg has been gathering followers among fans of nightmarish science fiction. Like his father, cult director David Cronenberg, he is interested in the possibilities of reshaping and disassembling the human body. His new film is now in theaters Vinfinite body of water it was partly filmed in Hungary. The square is in White Lotus viewers will be familiar with the idea of ​​satire taking place during the vacation of the rich, but the twists and turns that lean towards horror may also surprise them. Criticism.

Exciting luxury yachting on the Adriatic, buying up the world’s best athletes and setting them up in the middle of the desert, trumpeting a private space program to friends. Just a few headlines from the past period, which describe opportunities that are inaccessible to ordinary people. We had time to learn that the super-rich can do anything, and it seems that we can read about even more extreme forms of ragging today than in the past. The general societal hatred against the exceptional has started a new trend in films and TV series. In recent years, the outbreak of violence about the clash between the rich and the poor (They are alive, New world order), the absurdity of group psychology (White Lotus, The square) or the gastronomic lesson (The menu, Platform) satires.

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Brandon Cronenberg his third feature film, a Endless mirror of water also belongs to these ranks, while logically continuing the oeuvre of its director, which has been consistently built up to now. About his films belonging to the “body horror” subgenre (Porontyok, Videodrome, The fly) famous, cult Canadian director, David Cronenberg as his son, Brandon also inherited an insatiable curiosity about the human body and its radical transformation and disassembly. His first full-length film, a Virus host it was built on the idea that in the future celebrity diseases would become medically vaporizable and for sale, with which dedicated fans could infect themselves for good money.

Who wouldn’t want herpes like their favorite singer?

Then came the A murderous consciousness, the story of a female assassin who stalks her victims by temporarily taking control of another person’s mind – thus ensuring not only the elimination of her targets, but also the appropriate scapegoat. These films are linked by the heroes’ eerie experience of becoming strangers in their own bodies: the Virus host virus vendor begins to nurture in his body the suspiciously fatal disease of a fan-favorite celebrity, the A murderous consciousnessand an unsuspecting young man realizes that he has to share his mind with a strange woman with violent plans.

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After this, it does not come as a surprise to us that the younger Cronenberg a Endless mirror of wateralso denies his heroes the harmonious unity of body and soul that seems like a mirage hope. However, these figures were not prepared for a fate- and consciousness-shaping experience, they just came to relax on the idyllic island of Li Tolqa. (We have no idea where Li Tolqa, who does not exist in reality, can be – perhaps in Polynesia? -, but the film was shot in Croatia and Hungary, so we can recognize the Kelenföld Power Plant in a depressing scene in addition to the idyllic images of the Croatian coast.) James, the unsuccessful writer in the hotel, he meets an adventurous married couple, who tempt him on a nighttime exploration of the otherwise strict curfew island. At the end of the crooked night, James stomps a local man to death, and the next morning the assigned detective informs him that he faces the death penalty according to Li Tolqa’s laws.

However, there is one way to escape the judgment.

If the criminal is willing to pay enough money, a perfect copy will be made on the island. A clone who also inherits the perpetrator’s memories and who will be executed instead.

The horrified James pays, of course, so that he and his wife can watch the death of a man who looks exactly like him. The next day, he returns to the hotel and learns that his new friends and acquaintances have all already run afoul of the local law and are all used to the idea that their scapegoats will pay with their lives. As a matter of fact, committing crimes that can get away with it is considered pretty good fun.

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From this point on, the story is about James’s involvement in this wealthy company, where Li Tolqán acts as a petty king and knows no inhibitions or responsibilities. Alexander Skarsgardwhose attitude reminiscent of the northern princes already is Successionalso made him suitable for playing the privileged alpha male, this time he is able to portray the figure of the protagonist as small and frail. This is not an underrated acting performance from someone who is more used to playing jungle lords and viking heirs to the throne.

A Endless mirror of waterin rather Mia Gothé the more spectacular role, as the window wife who seduces and corrupts James, sometimes exudes cold indifference and sometimes demonic energy. The nymphomaniacappeared in, then two closely related horror films, that X is in Pearl the actress, who made a name for herself with her double lead role, is regularly found playing the roles she played in the nineties Juliette Lewistand ten years ago Juno Temple-t it was called: the duality of charming innocence and insanity, the baby-faced depravity, few people today can play better than him.

Her goth figure, Gabi, seduces James, who is thirsty for initiation, into erotically overheated adventures, made delirious with exotic drugs. These episodes, accompanied by pulsating colors and pumping machine music, capturing the altered state of consciousness, have been indispensable in all Brandon Cronenberg productions so far. Moreover, not only the splitting of identity, the twists and turns of out-of-body experiences based on science fiction motifs return in the director’s films, but also the narratives that emphasize class differences. THE Virus host his hero created a physical relationship between celebrities and ordinary people by selling the former’s viruses to the latter; the A murderous consciousness the background of his assassination was the acquisition of an extensive company empire and the presumed desire for revenge of one of the employees.

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The squarehez or a White Lotusabout the luxury vacation of the rich and based on the guilt of Americans and Europeans Endless mirror of water therefore, it joins the trend of socially sensitive, fresh satires in such a way that it also precisely fits into the line of Cronenberg’s films. Therefore, it is suitable to provide the opportunity to enter Hollywood for the director, who until now has mainly focused on smaller, independent films (Skarsgård and Goth are much bigger stars in Virus host it was barely known at the time of its premiere Caleb Landry Jones or in 2020 a A murderous consciousness starring in this year’s Oscar campaign Andrea at Riseborough).

But while there is no doubt about Cronenberg’s ability to create atmosphere and the terrifying power of his sci-fi basic ideas, it is precisely his calculation and cold sensitivity to trends that draw him down. Endless mirror of water of its value.

The writer-director’s previous films also had a thoroughly thought-out concept at the center, but in none of the cases did the difference seem so disproportionate in how much creative energy Cronenberg devotes to developing the twist that sets the story in motion, tending to horror, and to the continuation of the plot. It would be an exaggeration to say that nothing interesting happens with James after the execution of the clone, but while the first twist was definitely not foreseen, the next stops on the hero’s journey are predictable.

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For this reason, we can only view the film through the endless water mirror contained in the title that appears in the conversation between the two characters. We think we understand what current social problems it is about, and we appreciate how inventively its author varies the topics that are important to him. THE Endless mirror of waterit is just as difficult for the protagonist to escape from the diabolical island that has become his prison.

Infinity Pool, 2023, 117 minutes. 24.hu: 6,5/10.

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