"Wild Tales" Six Memorable Black Humor Morality Tales Film Review
"Wild Tales" ["Relatos Salvajes"]
"Wild Tales" Six Black Humor Morality Stories
"Wild Tales" is a movie as memorable as any I recall. Although I saw it more than a year ago each of the six separate tales of individuals who get what's coming to them for committing cruel, sinful, immoral or foolish acts remain in my mind as if I saw the movie yesterday. The film was made in Argentina, written and directed by Damian Szifron. Pedro Almodovar was one of the producers.
The first and perhaps most diabolical tale Is entitled "Pasternak." The short film opens on a small commercial aircraft headed for a resort. A man strikes up a conversation with a woman across the aisle who asks him what he does. He replies that he's a music critic, and she replies that she's a music teacher. She asks what he's critiqued recently to which he replies "a very nasty review of a symphony by a very untalented composer named Pasternak." The woman replies with surprise that Pasternak was one of her students, adding that "he had very little talent." It turns out that each of the passengers on the plane had a connection with Pasternak and not one had anything good to say about him. Each had mysteriously received a plane ticket for a free week at a nearby resort. The last passenger to speak up revealed that he was Pasternak's psychiatrist, He quickly got out of his seat and rushed up to the front of the plane and banged on the cockpit door shouting "Pasternak, Pasternak, you are a very fine fellow it's not your fault! Your mother and father are to blame!" Then the camera pans to an elderly couple sitting on lawn chairs in their back yardand ending with the plane diving toward them.
I won't reveal the plots of the other five short films. Suffice it to say they involve an escalating out-of-control road rage incident, a bride's reaction upon discovering at the wedding reception her bridegroom's infidelity the day before the wedding, an unethical, cruel home a foreclosure, a demolition expert's revenge against insensitive, unyielding government bureaucrats, and multi-millionaire parents' efforts to cover up their drunken son's fatal hit and run accident in the family car.
Some in the theater apparently were horrified by the movie, not catching the ironic black humor.
The movie is in Spanish with English subtitles.
NYTimes Review by Manohla Dargis
"Wild Tales" Trailer
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