The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears

The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears

The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears

2013. Directed by Helene Cattet and Bruno Forzani.

A Giallo homage and one of the most unique visual experiences in recent years, The Strange Color of Your Body's Tears is a brain burner that is the definition of style over substance.

A man returns home from a business trip and finds that his wife is missing. He begins to search for her in the haunted halls of his apartment building, encountering various personalities, each of which hides destructive secrets that blend together to form a surreal tapestry of sex, violence, and madness.

Manuel Decosse's cinematography is the entire ordeal. Using a combination of neon reds and greens contrasted with stark black and white, the entire story is presented as a nightmare given life. The camera moves between locations, from grizzly murder scenes to sterilized bedrooms in a non linear fashion, making the plot almost impossible to follow. Bernard Beets edits appear spliced via chainsaw. Each frame jumps from the tangible to the imagined with an alarming cadence that persists throughout, never allowing the viewer any form of respite. There are split camera scenes that make the dialogue difficult to dissect, but also reveal startling clues to the mystery for the patient observer. Everything in this film is a psychoanalytical fortune cookie, with each character, room, and hallway hatching revelations when they're least expected. The violence is vintage Giallo, up close, sexually charged, and absolutely brutal.

Klaus Tange gives an admirable performance as the lead. Using an almost non existent (or important) script by the directors, Tange manages to convey a man undone, bereft and circling the abyss. It's fascinating to watch, as his character is not particularly likable, but somehow garners sympathy in his hopeless quest for answers. Whether his wife left him or if he killed her is unimportant, it's the examination of the void left by her absence that is the substance of the drama being played out.

Alessandro Palestro's art direction virile and vicious. The film is essentially a single location that houses a burlesque tableau that is appealing and unsettling. Killers stalk the deep corridors and reclusive residents wallow in their own despair while awaiting judgement. The way the color palette is injected into the physical surroundings (both real and imagined) is kinetic, constantly assaulting the eye with a free form sense of manic devolution in each set piece.

Available now on blu ray, The Strange Colors of Your Body's Tears is a film for Giallo enthusiasts and horror fanatics. It's makes no effort at a resolution, forcing the viewer to decide for themselves upon conclusion. Using remarkable visuals and some nasty camera work, the film manages to pull ahead of the pack with its sheer audacity.

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