To launch the 2015 Spanish Film Festival last week, Palace Nova treated an audience to a screening of 2014 Argentine-Spanish black comedy film, and the finale to the festival: Wild Tales.
Written and directed by Damián Szifron and starring Ricardo Darín, Oscar Martínez, Leonardo Sbaraglia, Érica Rivas, Rita Cortese, Julieta Zylberberg and Darío Grandinetti, Wild Tales is true to its name.
Presented as an anthology film, Szifron’s creation is made up of six standalone short films linked by the theme of vengeance.
Nominated for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 87th Academy Awards, Wild Tales is a fitting crescendo to conclude the Spanish Film Festival with.
The film opens with a group of people on a plane who all realise they have been duped into catching that flight to fulfil the vengeful fantasy of the pilot.
All realising they have one thing in common – they have disappointed a man named Pasternak, who is not-so-coincidentally the pilot – the group discover their fate too late.
The film then continues in this dark vein, with each tale twisting and turning around a plot driven by the fury and fear of the protagonist.
Each unique short carries the theme of revenge, and is fraught with violence and intrigue; but don’t be deterred by the violence.
Although quite gruesome, the gory stuff is well within context and adds to the quirkiness of Szifron’s work.
The Spanish are famous for their passion, and the lineup of films for this year’s Spanish Film Festival reflects just that, with Wild Tales being no exception.
Accompanied by a captivating musical score by Gustavo Santaolalla, Wild Tales is cleverly pieced together and ends in an utterly spectacular fashion.
If you like your films episodic, dark, quirky and delightfully peculiar, this one is for you.
But don’t stop there; there’s an entire festival to enjoy from 6th – 20th May, 2015.
By Libby Parker