- 1h 22min
The animals arrive by night. They intuit. They resist. A young man leads them to their deaths before dawn. His dog discovers a terrifying world that seems certain never to end.The animals arrive by night. They intuit. They resist. A young man leads them to their deaths before dawn. His dog discovers a terrifying world that seems certain never to end.The animals arrive by night. They intuit. They resist. A young man leads them to their deaths before dawn. His dog discovers a terrifying world that seems certain never to end.
More than half a century later ,Maud Alpi comes back to the subject ;on the contemporary "feel good" French scene ,it takes a lot of guts to film such a place ;Mrs Alpi's first effort "Drakkar " was already off the beaten track ;instead of showing the hip youth who pullulates in the contemporary French movies, her film only featured a boy,a girl and a dog : their sole company was internet.
The boy and his dog might be Thomas and Boston in "Gorge Coeur Ventre" (= throat heart belly);and the girlfriend also appears in a love scene which may seem irrevelant ,but think it over : the love scene,and the swimming in the torrent with his colleague are the only moments of pleasure in one of the darkest work of the last ten years .
labelled "thriller", Alpi's movie is rather a documentary ;not for the squeamish, even though it suggests more than it shows ,much to the director's credit.She creates a horror atmosphere with an extraordinary economy of means : the silent death factory at night as the boy wanders with his dog through the gloomy corridors ;then after they burn the carcasses ,the ashes in the air ,and silence again ,suddenly enhanced by Léonard Cohen's lugubrious vocals.
In between , the stars are ,so to speak , the animals (the final cast and credits reads: featuring the pigs ,the lambs,the sheep,the oxes.......); although she hardly shows the slaughter , Alpi makes us feel the animals' "sixth sense " ;it is as though they had a premonition that a horrible fate lay in store for them ; the oxes' heads, filmed in close-up , seem to reflect misgiving and even anguish ;one of the beasts draws back (maybe the strongest moment in the whole film) ,in spite of Thomas's shouts "Allez!Allez!" (go on! come on!)...As though he wanted to drown out the squeals, the mooings,the bleatings....
"I wish they could create breeds which do not make noise and do not sh....."says his colleague to Thomas .
You may go veggie after watching it!
- Jul 15, 2018