Let The Corpses Tan – Sydney Underground Film Festival Review

'Let The Corpses Tan' 'Let The Corpses Tan'

If cinematic genius is what director/writer duo Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani were striving to achieve with this literary adaption, they've gone above and beyond the call of duty to make it across the line.


On the surface, 'Let The Corpses Tan' is the story of a heist gone right but a getaway gone wrong as robbers, police, so-called tourists and a lawyer battle it out spaghetti-Western style amongst the crumbling ruins in a Mediterranean hamlet hideout.

But scratch the layers down and you'll realise it's not so much the power play and relationships between the cast of survivors that keeps you on the edge of your seat, but the cinematic nuances in each and every short and urgent scene.

More than a film, 'Let The Corpses Tan' is a full sensory experience, despite relying on just sights and sounds. From the squeaks and creaks of leather jackets as they move under the beating sun, sweaty and sticky, to the click of guns as they're hoisted, aimed and fired, every sound is on hyper-drive and every taste, smell and touch felt.

Light pulls into dark as the relationships between the robbers turn ever more sour while in between Hélène and Bruno pepper in metaphors like a broken record, ranging from heavily contrasted shots painted in brilliant reds, blues and yellows, to ants squirming through a maze, seeking hiding spots and allies.

There are moments when this abstract nature raises more eyebrows than applause, feeling overly contrived and penned as discussion points in cinema studies classes. For the most part, I'd like to think there's artistic integrity at their heart because by and large, 'Let The Corpses Tan' is a work of art.

Sydney Underground Film Festival takes place at Factory Theatre 13-16 September.

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