Let the Corpses Tan Screen 6 articles

Let the Corpses Tan

2017

Let the Corpses Tan Poster
  • Stylish swagger goes full-tilt boogie in Let the Corpses Tan, the latest delirious exercise in lovingly retro pastiche from Helene Cattet and Bruno Forzani. Having amassed a devoted cult following with luridly horror-flavored Amer and The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears, the duo now adapt an influential 1971 French novel. The result is a spectacularly assaultive, borderline incoherent neo-Western that will recruit few new converts but is also guaranteed to leave no spectator indifferent.

  • The movie is calibrated for maximum outrageousness. It filters relentless gunplay through sexually explicit dream sequences that split the difference between hallucination and exploitation, straddling the line between they-don’t-make-em-like-this-anymore and you’ve-never-seen-anything-like-this-before... At times, the sensory assault can be hard to take (or maybe to take seriously), but these filmmakers know their crowd and do everything they can to please them.

  • It would be easy for it to lapse into postmodern pastiche, since it's fairly clear that Cattet and Forzani are dipping into specific cinematic histories. There's a little French and Italian horror, giallo, B-grade sexploitation, some spaghetti Western, and quite a bit of Japanese outlaw cinema, all baked right into the crust. While it sounds like the earlier two films owed much more to the likes of Mario Bava and Jess Franco, this one reads like Sergio Leone as refracted through Seijun Suzuki.

  • Shot on Super 16 CinemaScope in deliciously lurid colour by Manu Dacosse, backed by old music cues by Ennio Morricone (who else?) and featuring a sound design heavy on panting, scrunched leather, and the click-clack cocking of firearms, Let the Corpses Tan transforms genre pulp into pop art, keeping fetishism intact and frequently erupting into abstraction.

  • With its Leone-style extreme close-ups and Godardian juxtapositions, this is a lurid bloodbath especially designed for the cinephile. But Forzani and Cattet offer more than empty homage – their artful and thrilling genre deconstructions make apparent the influences that other crime films work to bury.

  • Astonishingly faithful to its source although spiced with select and salient changes, Cattet and Forzani’s Laissez bronzer les cadavres may come to be recognized as one of the best and most original literary adaptations in decades, even as it is an astonishingly cinematic experience. Relentlessly driven onward by Manchette-Bastid’s clockwork setup, the film nevertheless feels operatic in its exuberant succession of extravagant and exquisite images.

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