Wild Tales

Life doesn't always go as you planned.

For example, my plan for this weekend was to watch and review Wild Tales, a 2014 Argentinian-Spanish release that I had heard good things about. For those of you who aren't up to date on the newest films from Argentina / Spain / Argentina AND Spain, I should explain that Wild Tales is an anthology film that features six unconnected stories about people who have to confront the consequences of their past actions. One vignette is about a waitress who is shocked to discover that a mobster that wronged her family many years ago has wandered into her empty restaurant; one is about a young pampered man who killed someone in a drunken hit and run accident; the longest section takes place at a wedding where the bride catches her new husband flirting with a guest and correctly intuits that he's been cheating on her. Some of the stories are comic, some are surreal, and many of them are violent - but they are all intense.

I got through the watching part just fine. The reviewing part, however, totally got derailed. It just ended up being a busier weekend than I expected - on Saturday I went to a friend's album release party and ended up working their merch table for a few hours, not getting home till past midnight, and then early Sunday morning I got a surprise invitation to go to the beach. By the time I got done with that I was dehydrated, worn out and fairly pleased with how my weekend had gone... The idea of sitting down to write a long involved piece about a film that was both vivid and uneven just didn't appeal to me.

I was well aware that if I was going to write a proper review of this movie I would have to do it ASAP, before all of its many moving parts got jumbled in my mind. And I did want to write about it because some of its segments are very powerful, and because this is the sort of slightly under-the-radar film that I would love to spread the word about. But I also knew that I just didn't have it in me. I often have trouble articulating an intelligent opinion about emotionally heavy films even under the best of circumstances, and after spending a long weekend relaxing in the sun I definitely didn't have the brainpower to explore the complex web of guilt and remorse and bad karma that connects all of Wild Tales' vignettes.

But here's the good thing: while I was working at the merch table and exploring the Oregon coast I did have a chance to craft a write a whole bunch of jokes with my friends. Now, I understand that it is a bit odd to put these jokes in this space given that none of them have anything to do with this film, but then again, this blog is a document of what I really think more than it is a place for me to post polished professional reviews. And the truth is that while I enjoyed watching Wild Tales I didn't think of it very much once it was over. No, I was too busy thinking about dumb things to make my friends laugh. So here's a more accurate snapshot of what was really going on in my mind this weekend:

Section One: In which I combine the actor Joseph Gordon Levitt with the Book of Leviticus to create a character named "Joseph Gordon Leviticus"

  • Text, 8:06 PM: "Incepting someone so that they have a dream within a dream is as much an abomination onto the Lord as a poly-cotton blend"
  • Text, 9:15 PM: "If you turn around and God turns you to Salt then he has "closed your loop." And if God turns your wife to salt then he has closed your "Lot-Per." But never fear, ever time He closes a Loop or a Lot-Per He also opens a window." 
  • Text 9:36 PM: "God made the light pretty early, then he made that other thing, then on the 3rd day he made 3rd Rock From the Sun, which was totally hilarious, bro." -- Actually attributable to Joseph Genesis-Leviticus
  • Text: 10:45 PM : "What did I tell you about stopping to levitt the bread? For fuck's sake we're in a hurry here!" -- Actually attributable to Joseph "Moses" Passover

Section two: Sharknado spin off ideas

  • Text, 10:04 PM: "You know what would one up the Sharknado? The Scarnado, which is when a tornado picks up Scar from the Lion King and drops him on Scarlet "Scarjo" Johansson. Sure, its a less scary concept but you have to admit its execution would involve more star power."
  • Text. 10:11 PM:" A Chardonnay-nado would be the drunkest weather event of all time"
  • Text, 10:37 PM: "The Sharpei-nado: a tornado drops a buttload of basket [sic] hounds on famous architect I M Pei"

Section three: Random one off thoughts

  • Text, 9:20 PM: "Rave DJs are basically the packing peanuts of the music world. Every time you see one you have to ask yourself: Where do they come from? Why would anyone think it's a good idea to make this? For the love of God why am I dealing with this right now?"
  • Text: 12:19 AM: "If I saw an article titled "John Wayne Gacy just Pwned Kevin "Dwayne?" Spacey" I would definitely read it, even though I know it would have to be clickbait gibberish"
  • Text: 12:24 AM: "Now that this has degraded into Nazi jokes we can safely say that it has jumped the Sharnknado" -- Joseph Goebbels-Levitt

So the moral of the story is: movies about bad karma and sad hearts are good, but jokes about sharks are better.

Winner: Me

Wild Tales on IMDB