Thursday, 14 April 2011

Taxidermia (2006)

A movie that follows a rather twisted narrative thread, concentrating on three males (each one descended from the other) who all have certain peculiarities.
Things begin with Morosgoványi Vendel (played by Csaba Czene), a military man who is so horny that he’s aroused by a pig carcass when he’s not lying back and shooting fire from his penis or trying to use a hole in a shed wall as a masturbatory aid while he watches women frolic around.
Move forward to Morosgoványi’s son, Balatony Kálmán (played by Gergely Trocsanyi). Balatony is a champion speed-eater who starts to lose his edge when he falls in love with a female champion.
Then we have the final part of the film watching Balatony’s son, Balatony Lajoska (played by Marc Bischoff). Balatony Jr. spends a lot of his time looking after the morbidly obese Balatony Sr. and then hurries home to continue pursuing his passion for taxidermy.
Director Gyorgy Palfi, who also co-wrote the screenplay with Zsofia Ruttkay based on short stories by Parti Nagy Lajos, does a great job here, decorating the unpleasant material with plenty of style and skill.
This is not for the faint of heart. The first section has some crazy sexual content, the second consists of many gross moments centred around the speed-eating (which includes a hell of a lot of vomiting) and the third and final section builds up to . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .  well, I’d better let you find out for yourself.
The acting from all concerned is very good (it’s only my ignorance stopping me from naming a number of the supporting players here) and the main characters are always watchable even if they’re not all that likeable. There’s something mesmerising about just how far from the norm their peccadilloes are, something that somehow carries you through the grosser moments right up to an ending that is as intriguing as it is hard-going and, ultimately, slightly preposterous.
Taxidermia is not a film to recommend to many people, it’s not something that many will end up enjoying but it’s never less than interesting and I was impressed by the succession of uncomfortable images. If you’re intrigued, and of strong enough stomach, then give it a watch. 

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