The world needs more extreme art-house cinema, and if We Are The Flesh is the type of art-house we can expect, I say bring it on! This shocking allegory is both transcendent and truculent, base, slimy, and beautiful. Full of fearless and freaky performances, you'll probably be enraptured and irritated in equal measure by We Are The Flesh, but you won't be disappointed.
Director Emiliano Rocha Minter draws from masters of the cinema of transgression for his allegorical fantasia, but it's not necessary to be familiar any of them (Jodorowsky, Passolini, Noe) to enjoy We Are The Flesh, all you need is a willingness to open your mind and move past the idea of shocks for shocks' sake. We Are The Flesh isn't an endurance test, like you may have thought. It's the simple story of a raggedy brother and sister (Diego Gamaliel and Maria Evoli, respectively) wandering a desolate city, looking for food and shelter. They stumble upon the mysterious Mariano (Noe Hernandez) who invites them to assemble a strange cave-like space with tape and cardboard. Then things get really weird. Sex, murder, and cannibalism come into play, but the message doesn't present fleshy debasement as an evil thing. Or does it? This is a movie that not only asks for, but will also reward multiple viewings.
From the opening scenes, viscerally disgusting and poetic, it's clear We Are The Flesh is the real thing. Not only does Minter construct scenes with patience and striking visual beauty, (or something like beauty) he also summons monumental performances from his three leads. Hernandez inhabits his role with intensity; gleeful, fearsome and potent, while Evoli and Gamaliel go places we really don't expect them to go, with sincere courage and conviction. Stir this all together with hypnotic imagery, searing color, and capricious music, for an unforgettable viewing experience.
"Chance is the greatest criminal" opines Mariano in one of his more lucid moments, so if you're a fan or scholar of the cinema of transgression, don't miss out on the chance to see this new entry in the canon of shocking art-house movies. Highly Recommended.