THE CANNIBAL CLUB **** Brazil 2018 Dir: Guto Parente. 81 mins
An often funny and compelling satire of the Brazilian elite – the paranoid deviants in positions of power and the 1% who spend their evenings laughing about their resentment of Squeegee-wielding “punks” offering unasked-for car washes and the “scum” whom they believe bring down family values. The focus is on Otavio (Tavinho Teixeira) and his wife Gilda (Ana Luiza Rios), a wealthy couple who live in a plush seaside mansion thanks to the profits generated by Teixeira’s prominent security company. They also kill and consume lowly employees, sometimes after Gilda has fucked them, while overseeing The Cannibal Club, of which congressman Borges (Pedro Domingues) is a member. The plot pivots around the moment in which Gilda catches Borges indulging his previously concealed sexual fantasies. Parente’s short, bitter movie has an eye-catching, bravura opening in which the well to do couple’s big secret is revealed via an enthusiastic explosion of explicit fucking, blood, cum, full-frontal nudity from both genders, frenzied wanking and dismemberment. This sets the tone for a blistering takedown of 21st century class conflicts, with exuberant sex and violence punctuating the dehumanising banalities of shitty job interviews and political corruption. The bloody punchline is marvellously sour.
Review by Steven West