Raw (2016) – Movie Review
When I Raw, saw the trailer of this movie some months back, I was like “hsdadjuosajjc”. Sorry but that’s what the keyboard went like after I puked all over it.
Ok sorry! That didn’t happen. Infact on the contrary, I was quite intrigued by the subject matter, “Cannibalism”. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t fantasize about eating my friends or family, however the trailer mentioned this movie winning awards at a lot of film festivals and garnering some really good reviews. That’s something that I literally couldn’t stomach (see what I did there?).
Thoth interrupts: “No LOLkein, I’m thinking – that almost most certainly does not certify as a witty comparison… keep trying.
LOLkein continues unphased:
How the hell does a movie that looks like a gore fest, get so much acclaim?
So I wear my pirate hat, download this French movie and hit the play button!
Sarcofagus interrupts: “Pirate hat… seriously?”
Confusios interrupts (while wearing an astronaut’s helmet): “wait.. what’s wrong with wearing a Pirate Hat?
LOLkein (continues as though not interrupted):
Here’s how RAW basically plays out:
A young girl (who just happens to be a vegetarian) dreams of being a “veterareaninan” (or whatever you call a person who fixes animals) like her elder sister and enrolls to the college.
In college – a ragging session ensues as she is dragged to eat a rabbit kidney (no kidding, they actually had that scene)
Now this woman has tasted blood, and I am like “Welcome to the non-veg club”, but then this woman has other plans…I guess.
In an agonizing scene, which I have to eat myself in order to not spoil for you, the protagonist ends up tasting human blood for the first time. And that’s when this movie turns a leaping lizard, into a giant Godzilla.
It’s a hunt!
A tale of a woman coming of age (and mind) and unleashing her RAW human instincts! And before I could ask “Where the gore at?” this movie has already gripped me tight into a narrative that is purely horrific to see unfold. Scene by scene, increasing its intensity like someone slowly turning the knob of a gas chamber they put you in. (This is a joke I know you did Nazi coming)
And at the same time, hate-me-all-you-want but I can’t help but admit – it’s beautiful to look at. Crafted with finesse like serving the worst dish (in this case, cannibalism), like it’s a premium gourmet platter. This thanks to some of the best camera work and sound effects I’ve seen in recent times. I won’t deny that some of the scenes are difficult to watch, but then when you hit Play button on such a film, you should know what you are getting into. The Saw in the movie – Saw wasn’t there to teach you carpentry right? It’s there to freaking chop off your leg. So yeah, point made.
I have seen quite a few coming of age film, but honestly none even come close to how different and unique this idea is. It’s completely unrelatable, unless you are the prodigy of Hannibal Lecter, yet unnerving to the extent of making you think -”Could I be so…raw?”
Maybe it’s metaphorical in some deep twisted way. We humans, do have desires and passions that are buried deep inside. What if that hidden desire is cannibalisms? And, what happens if this hidden desire is unleashed? The protagonist is possessed by the idea of human flesh and no amount of sandwiches and burgers are helping her get rid of it. And if that’s not enough, her idea is to ‘lure’ the prey as a seductress into becoming sheesh kebabs. All the while, she is still struggling to figure out who or what she really is becoming. So that adds more ‘rawness’ to her hunt as well.
Like I said, in essence, this isn’t a gore-fest, but rather a riveting drama of a girl trying to struggle with her own identity and finding herself, with cannibalism as the backdrop (Did I say that too casually?). It’s as much of a gore-fest, as much as The Walking Dead is about being just about zombies.
However, no matter how bold Raw might be, no matter how many philosophical questions it asks or no matter how much noise it’s making at the International Film Festivals, one cannot deny that it’s a stressful movie to watch. But…
It deserves a watch nonetheless, simply because it really challenge the audience with their conventional beliefs…
That there cannot be a gore-film that is thought provoking,
That a movie that has so much blood to show, be beautiful to look at.
That a movie with a taboo topic of cannibalism, be so much more than an ordinary entertainer.
So watch Raw, because the director, Julia Ducournau (Probably the 1st female director to try gore) challenges you with this courageous film, asking a very important question – Do you really have what it takes to watch good cinema? If the answer is yes, trust me, those disposable vomit bags will be rendered completely useless.
PUKE!!!! WAAA!!! BLAAA!!! – The three other movie monks react to the trailer of RAW – shown to them by a LOLkein.