The UK release of Argentinian comedy-drama Wild Tales is plagued by controversy. The film is made up of six separate revenge stories but it’s the first that’s sparked debate. It shows a pilot purposefully crashing a plane full of his adversaries. The writing is sharp but in light of the recent Germanwings tragedy, it’s an understatement to describe the scene as unfortunate.
Wild Tales

Since its debut at Cannes, Wild Tales has been gathering admiration and critical acclaim. Damián Szifrón’s film is a beacon for plucky writing, creative cameras, impeccable comic timing and slick production.

Exploring what happens when ordinary frustrations bubble over, Wild Tales is for anyone who’s ever thought about getting back at a bad driver, imagined themselves reaping vengeance on a cheating partner or telling the authorities what they think. The film’s characters do all of these things and the results are as uplifting as they are horrific.

Szifrón isn’t afraid to push the boundaries of laughter and this confidence is Wild Tales’ greatest strength. Many of the stories could resolve much earlier than they do, but Szifrón’s willingness to push them to their extremes reaps the biggest laughs. Just when you think things can’t get any worse for Szifrón’s characters, they do.
Wild Tales

That Wild Tales feels cohesive is a testament to its delicate thematic weaving, going beyond the broad revenge motif to encompass freedom, corruption and family. It’s intelligent writing, packed with playful touches from music choices to visual imagery: a universal comedy for modern times.
 

VERDICT: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 5/5

 

Certificate: U
Running time: 122 minutes
UK release date: 27 March 2015

 

Review first printed in Ashfield & Mansfield Chad

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