Wednesday 6 July 2022

REVIEW: Crimes of the Future (2022) - Stars Viggo Mortensen, Léa Seydoux and Kristen Stewart

Review by Jon Donnis
The latest film "from the mind of David Cronenberg" is one that will truly freak you out. Even though I just watched it, I am slightly unsure of what I just watched, if it was genius, or just weird.

The film is set in an undetermined dystopian future.

We start with a mother and young boy Brecken, for some reason the young boy decides to start eating a plastic bin. His mother watches on from the door. Later when the boy is sleeping, the mother looks at him and with a pillow suffocates him. Her ex-husband Lang (Scott Speedman) finds the boy. Well that is a depressing start to a film, but also sets up the weirdness you are about to experience.

In this future, pollution and climate change have forced scientists to develop biotechnology, machines and mechanical computers that can directly interface with the human body. I say human, but I am not sure if that is what we are dealing with any more. It seems that people have undergone some biological changes of indeterminate origin. The most obvious of these changes is the lack of any physical pain, or disease. You would think this is a good thing, right?. One interesting by-product of this lack of pain is the ability to undergo surgery while fully conscious.

Insert people having crazy body modifications, man with lots of ears all over his body is one example.

Another of these changes is shown at the start of the film with the boy Brecken, we learn that he can digest plastics as food which was why he was eating a plastic bin. Did he inherit this, or was it created for him?

We are then introduced Saul Tenser (Viggo Mortensen) and Caprice (Léa Seydoux), a world-renowned performance art couple. Tenser has a condition called "accelerated evolution syndrome", his body is constantly creating new organs, as part of their art, they operate on Tenser while he is awake and remove the newly created organs.

Due to his condition, Tenser has severe respiratory and digestive discomfort, and as such has to rely on a number of biomechanical devices, including a bed, a machine through which Caprice performs surgery on him, and a chair that twitches and rotates as it assists him with eating.

Tenser and Caprice meet with people at the National Organ Registry, a governmental office designed to uphold the state's restrictions on human evolution by cataloguing and storing newly evolved organs.

Timlin (Kristen Stewart), one of the investigators at the National Organ Registry takes a particular interest in Tenser, and observes a "show" of him having an organ removed.

Shadowy Government figures want Tenser to infiltrate a group of radical evolutionists, and we have the making of one of the weirdest films I have ever seen.

Viggo Mortensen is excellent as the suffering Tenser, and he is the one you will feel most emotionally connected to.

I quite enjoyed some of the mechanical machines that Tenser uses for sleeping or eating, everything just looks and seems weird, not necessarily futuristic, as this film stays away from the digital, as I said everything is mechanical. Almost alienlike it its design.

There are gory moments, and some very uncomfortable moments for the viewer, so be aware if you sit down to watch this, and definitely don't watch while having your dinner.

The Good
The makeup is incredible, everything looks and feels different to our reality, and that truly does help the film stand out as something shocking but also interesting.

The Bad
The film doesn't explain some things well enough, and I was left a bit confused at times.

I feel like I need to watch it again to truly understand better what the film is about, and its deeper meanings.

A really bizarre horror film, that has left me thinking, which I say is a good thing.

I am reluctant to give it a score, as I am not really sure how I feel about it.

I think I liked it, and I think it was good. So I will give it a safe 7/10

CRIMES OF THE FUTURE will be released on 9th September in UK and Irish cinemas

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