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Review "Crimes of the Future": The Hypnotic And Sinister Work Of Cronenberg

Director David Cronenberg's return to the big screen was full of gore, pain and beauty. This is our review of "Crimes of the Future".

Frame from the movie

Photo: YT-Neon

LatinAmerican Post | Theoscar Mogollón González

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Leer en español: Reseña "Crimes of the Future": obra hipnótica y siniestra de Cronenberg

Admired by many and shunned by a few, David Cronenberg hadn't directed a movie in eight years since "Maps to the Stars" (2014). However, all that waiting time was totally worth it when the Canadian returned through the front door of the Cannes Film Festival, presenting a story that navigates between madness, gore, art and leaves several topics to reflect on. "Crimes of the Future" is an original work that reflects the director's enigmatic and philosophical world of cinema.

As he has repeatedly shown us, Cronenberg captures a dystopian reality with a future where humanity has adapted to an artificial environment. Under the slogan 'surgery is the new sex', people now allow their bodies to be the objects of transformations and mutations that make it clear that pain is already a thing of the past. At this point Caprice and Saul appear, two characters whose talents come together to put on an avant-garde show where they enhance the beauty of having other human organs "tattooed" on the body.

In turn, a researcher from the Office of the National Organ Registry named Timlin will closely follow his movements and who will also have a particular interest in Saul. Along with this, a mysterious group will burst onto the scene and take advantage of the notoriety of these practices to make known to the entire world what the next phase of human evolution will be. Could there be anything more sinister than this?

To make this gritty story possible, Cronenberg had an explosive cast led by three established figures. In the first instance, Viggo Mortensen, who returns to work with the Canadian director for the fourth time after "A History of Violence" (2005), "Eastern Promises" (2007) and "A Dangerous Method" (2011). While actresses Kristen Stewart and Léa Seydoux, who already know what it's like to work in auteur cinema, have their first experience with the methodical filmmaker.

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Strangely moving

That a film is able to make people leave the theater at the beginning for its twisted images, but ends up receiving a standing ovation of more than five minutes, is something that very few directors like David Cronenberg can achieve. Regardless of whether that is a compliment or the opposite, the truth of the matter is that this scenario had already been announced by the Canadian himself before the premiere. How can something so terrifying and grotesque, in turn, generate applause and positive reviews?

If you can bear the opening of "Crimes of the Future", where a terrible and harrowing act is explicitly described, you will certainly be able to taste all that is to come. And it is that the intrigue of knowing which port the ship will go to is the attraction of this trip, since in itself the plot was never designed to disturb or generate that atrocious impact. Such sensations, in fact, would only manifest if you are new to Cronenberg's works.

Now, many may be expecting the worst and most visually terrible, but it's actually not as repulsive as it sounds. There is certainly blood, throbbing organs, a lot of meat, incisions, vomit, cloudy saliva and even a man with ears glued all over his body. Yes, it is gore at its best, although not unpleasant if we see beyond the plot. Art, pain, creativity, evolution, beauty, sex... that's what Cronenberg talks about between the lines and that's what you have to stay with.

But not everything is about gore, there are political winks related to the Governments and their attempts to control even the bodies of the people (in reference to abortion). It also points to climate change. He even dares to propose a radical solution on reusing plastic as food.

In short, the new David Cronenberg is capable of being everything and nothing at the same time. With touches of comedy and irony, this is another work where the Canadian explores his obsessions and manages to go beyond them as only he knows how to do it. "Crimes of the Future" is a haunting look into the future that very few will want to see. can you?