(Argentina 2013 92m) Village Recoleta
p Tamae Garateguy, Jimena Monteoliva d Tamae Garateguy w Diego Fleischer c Pigu Gómez ed Catalina Rincón s Sami Buccella
a Luján Ariza, Edgardo Castro, Guadalupe Docampo, Nicolás Goidschmidt, Mónica Lairana
I continue reviewing the films from Argentina that I saw at Bafici, this one was part of the Vanguard and Genre competition.
It’s incredible to find genre works coming from places that you wouldn’t normally find genre works from. It is known that Argentina has a great history of horror films, low budget and independently made, but even if this particular film complies to those guidelines, it’s still astonishing to see how much it has accomplished with a great technical and acting team, making it one of the most interesting horror projects that has come out of an ignored place, at least since ‘Let the Right One In’ (2008) where Sweden took all the world by surprise with its seductive and beautiful vampire story. While absolutely less supernatural and way more psychological, this film manages to create the same sense of beauty through its use of black and white cinematography and camera-work, that even if its grounded under its shaky-cam instincts during the most intense scenes (as a way to hide the poor state of the production, as expected), it can create instances of darkness and light in certain static shots that are just amazing to look at, and would be even more attractive if there was a little more attention in the art department in terms of filling up the empty spaces that feel as if there wasn’t enough budget for the apartments or places to be completely filled with character and certain ‘je-ne-sais-qui’ that made other horror films like ‘The Texas Chainsaw Massacre’ (1974).
‘She Wolf’, as mentioned earlier and as much as the title would suggest, isn’t a supernatural horror film, in fact is more comparable to something like ‘Se7en’ (1995), than ‘The Wolf Man’ (1941), but at the same time let’s just say that here we have a bold directing choice in terms of the performance and how the information is put on the screen. At the start this decission may seem a bit confusing, but it takes time for it to really sink in and totally understand it, the main character is played by three different actresses, each one representing an aspect of the life, mind and soul of the She Wolf, a psycho serial killer who preys on lusty men, she fucks them and then kills them, to put it simply. And so goes on the plot of the film until the two most predictable things happen: one of her victims is actually a cop searching for her, and she fucks someone and doesn’t kill him, because she seems to have fallen in some kind of sentiment towards him (best represented by the images that start and end this review); and while those developments are interesting in the way that they are played (the cop is actually furious because he didn’t have the chance to fuck her properly; and the kid who she falls for has a lot of problems with his father and actually avoids her for a lot of time), they are still developments that we can see coming from a mile away if we are familiar with modern tropes of the psycho killer movies of this age.
Nevertheless, the movie manages to get above all these events that may seem tired for those veterans in the genre, the beauty in which they are put together, as well as the novelty (in some way) of the three actresses playing the main role (one slutty, the other innocent and the last one being the actual killer) make it worth a watch for those who want to see what is coming out in different countries and what to expect. Here we have a killer opening sequence that is, at sometimes, really hard to see because of the violence and sexual behaviour portrayed in such a raw and gruesome way. It’s recommended, and while it won’t make any lists at the end of the year, it deserves that it has its place among the people who like this material, as they deserve to see it.