REVIEW / FILM OPINION – After his excellent “Call me by your name”, director Luca Guadagnino and actor Timothée Chalamet team up again with “Bones and All”. A romance like no other that follows the destiny of young Maren, superbly played by Taylor Russell.
Bones and All : an astonishing and puzzling romance
Adapted from the novel by Camille DeAngelis, published in 2015, Bones and All is the new feature film by Luca Guadagnino (Call my by your name, Suspiria). The story tells of the fate of Maren (Taylor Russell), an 18-year-old teenager abandoned by her father, who no longer feels able to support her. I have to say that Maren has serious mental problems since she suffers from cannibal impulses.
Here she is alone, having to face a dangerous world for her, but especially for others. She then decides to embark on a road trip across the United States to track down his mother. During her journey, she will cross paths with other cannibals like Lee (Timothée Chalamet) and Sully (Mark Rylance).
After Call my by your name and Suspiria, Luca Guadagnino explores even more the themes of the body and the pulpit. With this story of cannibals, the filmmaker mixes genres with a certain mastery. Road-movie, romance, with a cloud of horror, Bones and All offers a love story like no otherled by sick, brainless protagonists who can’t help but eat human meat.
Luca Guadagnino thus delivers a great balancing act between anthropophagous romance, rebellious, romantic and criminal story in the manner of Bonnie & Clyde, and intimate film of a young woman who seeks her identity through the prism of her mother. The director offers a fascinating work on the haunting wandering of two teenagers fleeing a society in which they are considered pariahs, monstrous marginals.
Themes perfectly managed
It remains for the spectators to make the effort to identify with cannibals. For that, Luca Guadagnino takes up somewhat the same themes as Severe (2017). In effect, he presents cannibalism as a disease, such as obsessive disorder and addiction. A way for him to constantly remind viewers that if his heroes eat people, it’s not their fault. Through this, Luca Guadagnino wants to create a form of empathy towards its protagonists.
Luca Guadagnino also offers a amazing reinterpretation of the vampire myth. He creates bloodsucking monsters in spite of themselves. It depicts characters who try to escape their condition, to become something else, and who, as the only remedy, set certain limits. Bones and All thus addresses considerable moral issues. Should we kill just to feed ourselves? Who should be killed? And above all, should we continue to kill? The work constantly asks a series of ethical questions to remind us that our two heroes are precisely not monsters, but individuals trapped in a mental illness that eats them up.
Taylor Russell bursts the screen
Bones and All is above all a film about a young woman’s search for identity. Through the prism of the mother, Mauren looks behind her to understand herself better, to accept herself and above all to determine where her cannibalistic nature comes from. Luca Guadagnino therefore chooses the trail of heredity to justify the actions of his heroes, in particular through a terrifying sequence where the daughter confronts the mother.
In many ways, Bones and All is finally a film about adolescence, about the transition to adulthood. It’s a look at an ill-tempered teenager, who is looking for her place and her heritage in an ever crazier world. Luca Guadagnino addresses the feeling of difference, of rejection, and constantly justifies the use of cannibalism as a gateway to his subject.
Finally, the big reveal of Bones and All remains Taylor Russell. The 28-year-old Canadian actresswhich has already appeared in Escape Room and waves, totally pops the screen in Luca Guadagnino’s film. A subtle blend of strength, determination, cruelty, but also sensitivity and vulnerability, she carries the work on her shoulders with incredible talent. Helped by a modern gothic achievement and luminous which sometimes recalls the cinema of Jim Jarmusch, it is the great strength and the primary interest of Bones and All.