Carnages

dir. Gleize

Opens Fri Feb 6

Hollywood Theater

Carnages is a truly bizarre film full of neurotic, lonely characters plagued by imperfections, secrets, and lies--whose lives intersect because of a bull.

Trying to explain what happens in this film is nearly impossible, as it is the viewer's job to connect each character to the other by a tiny elusive thread; the thread, of course, being the bull. First, there is the bullfighter's first fight. He taunts the bull flamboyantly while a young girl watches the battle on television. She predicts the fighter will be gored, and he is, losing his liver and slipping into a coma. The bull is killed and loaded onto a truck.

A mother and daughter are reunited at the airport and soon find themselves following the truck that holds the dead bull. The daughter is the schoolteacher of the young girl who watched the goring on television.

There is a beautiful aspiring actress who eventually unites with a depressed man, who frequently thinks of killing himself. Together they meet the young girl, and this is all because of the bull.

There is a doctor who uses the bull's eyes in his research, and his brother, a taxidermist, who receives the bull's horns as a birthday gift. The horns eventually reunite the brothers with their father, but explaining how would ruin the laborious fun.

There is a dog and a woman who die because of the bull, and a boy who lives. The schoolteacher learns the secrets of her past because of the bull, and the bull helps the actress and the depressed man find love and become figure skaters. Regardless of how confused you are presently, if you like a film like Memento that keeps you a step behind, or if you think you're smart enough to stay ahead, you will enjoy Carnage. It's full of beautifully confounding scenes and rich characters you'll pity, loathe, and love; that is, if you can remember who is who.