‘To the Bones: Bones and All’: Luca Guadagnino and Timothée Chalamet’s reunion is a grim generational road movie of cannibalistic teenage love

There’s a lot road trip movies about murderous runaway teensfollowing the tradition of ‘bad land‘ (Badlands, 1973) or ‘Natural Born Killers‘ (Natural Born Killers, 1994), but few that have cannibals as protagonists. With ‘to the bone‘ (Bones and all, 2022), which opens in theaters on November 25Luca Guadagnino returns to play genre cinema after ‘Suspiria‘ (2018), although at the same time it also approaches the romance of ‘call me by your name‘ (2017), even touching on the queer background in a coded way.

Not only because of the presence of Timothée Chalamet in the cast, but because of the sensitivity displayed when dealing with a love story on the margins, using fantastic cinema as a kaleidoscope of the dilemma of secrecy. The director adapts a novel young adult by Camille DeAngelis that is more like ‘Interview with the Vampire’ than ‘Twilight‘, in his story of adolescent self-discovery without fuss in showing the bloody reality of human monsters.

Taylor Russell plays Maren, a young woman who moves to a small town with her father, Frank (andre holland), in which she doesn’t have many friends, but is invited to a slumber party and runs away, despite her father keeping the windows shut tight. Maren arrives at her friends’ house, where they paint their nails and gossip. Maren approaches a new partner with intensity, as if they were going to kiss, but she can’t help but grab the girl’s finger and bite it as if she were a Moorish skewer.

american cannibal

An early impact that indicates that the film has no problem being explicit and shows us the impulsive nature of the cannibals of this universe, radically changing gender in a matter of a second, practically at the same time that Maren’s world crumbles before her. eyes, she does not understand what has happened and must go on a road trip to find her mother and try to understand her origins, what pretty much keeps the pulse of history beating during its more than two hours.

The main basis of what unites that beginning with the end of the story is an audio tape that his father records for him to try to explain his primary nature, a very interesting resource but that ends up being somewhat distorted by the ease with which the adolescent finds practical examples in which to look at herself, with which the secrets on cassette end up being somewhat functionalnothing that really has an impact effect that changes the film.

However, the structure of road movie makes it easier for the character to meet several people like her along the way. First to a strange man, Sully, played by a superb Mark Rylance, for a change, who can smell her from half a mile away and wants to raise her to survive, he also finds a man from Kentucky, Jake (Michael Stewart Stuhlberg), and his friend, Brad, none other than the director of the new trilogy of ‘Halloweendavid gordon green. A community that is giving us clues and details about the art of cannibalism, almost as if it were a sequel to ‘Raw’ (Serious, 2016)

Withered

At some point he meets Lee (Timothée Chalamet), a young man with whom he feels an immediate connection as they share the family and social uprooting, thus beginning an adventure in the style of the Terence Malick film, which has come to be compared to ‘Night Travelers’, with which it only shares certain moments of specific aesthetics and setting. The treatment of cannibalism is, on the other hand, similar to that of vampire movieswith some points in common with ‘El ansia’.

monster love

Like that, the coding queer of the bloodsuckers recovers the Hollywood allegory of monstrous representation, and ‘To the Bones’ continues the tradition with its initiation story set in the Reagan era, leaving some notes of connection with current events, such as that television clip of a young Giuliani, which reminds us of the power dynamics of the 80s for all those who lived outside of a rigid heterosexual spectrum.

Guadagnino’s visual grammarShe is often engrossed in her own lyricoften breaking its intoxicating effect, despite the fact that the contrast between horror, very much in the style of Jack Ketchum, and the realistic drama often shakes, accents are lacking in its story, which is somewhat flat and predictable in its most difficult moments. close to the thriller, so that everything related to Rylance’s character is blurred, and what is worse, his appearances end up being convenient.

rylance

And it’s a shame, because ‘Hasta los huesos’ is full of impressive moments, great microchapters and situations, like a certain reunion of Maren that makes us uncomfortable at levels only seen in ‘The Road’ (2009), but which never really reach hit the shock of that whole first Sully performance. At times the story is anesthetized and the camera enjoys being a musty vintage outlet catalog with two very handsome models, mesmerized by Chalamet’s hairstyle, looking for landscapes as a lever for their love story to move with the prints what the script has not achieved.

‘To the Bones: Bones and All’: Luca Guadagnino and Timothée Chalamet’s reunion is a grim generational road movie of cannibalistic teenage love