The Untamed 2016

La región salvaje

Directed by Amat Escalante Fresh

Love triangle drama and erotic bio-sci-fi thrills meet in a truly bizarre exploration of oppressive machismo and liberating sexual abandon from Mexican director Amat Escalante.

Mexico In Spanish with English subtitles
100 minutes DCP
R16
violence, nudity, sex scenes, offensive language & content that may disturb

Director

Producers

Jaime Romandía
,
Fernanda de la Peza
,
Amat Escalante

Screenplay

Amat Escalante
,
Gibrán Portela

Photography

Manuel Alberto Claro

Editors

Fernanda de la Peza
,
Jacob Secher Schulsinger

Production designer

Daniela Schneider

Costume designers

Daniela Schneider
,
Ursula Schneider
,
Paulina Kuznicka

Music

Guro Moe
,
Lasse Marhaug
,
Martín Escalante

With

Ruth Ramos (Alejandra)
,
Simone Bucio (Veronica)
,
Jesús Meza (Angel)
,
Eden Villavicencio (Fabián)
,
Andrea Peláez (Angel’s mother)
,
Oscar Escalante (Sr. Vega)
,
Bernarda Trueba (Marta, Vega’s wife)

Festivals

Venice, Toronto, San Sebastián
,
London 2016; Rotterdam, San Francisco 2017

Awards

Best Director, Venice Film Festival 2016

Elsewhere

A mysterious visitor offers gratification to the sexually oppressed in this arresting mix of hard-edged realism and bio-sci-fi from Mexican provocateur Amat Escalante (Heli). Alejandra and her husband Angel live with their young sons in Guanajuato, Mexico. While the swaggering Angel lords it over his family, he’s also lining up his next furtive hotel room hook-up with Fabián, Alejandra’s brother. The gentle humanitarian in the film, Fabián works in the local hospital. He too strains under the yoke of the domineering Angel.

One day a young stranger arrives at the clinic, strung out but strangely exhilarated, with what appears to be a dog bite. Soon she befriends Fabián and Alejandra and observes that maybe they should be getting some of what she’s been getting. She directs them to a chalet in the countryside where a scholarly elderly couple harbour the mysterious guest. Not everyone granted access to the chalet comes out exhilarated. As in the fierce Heli, Escalante’s indictment of posturing machismo is graphic, incisive and super-realistic. Envisaging its nemesis as nature consumed by sexual ecstasy, he’s created one memorably weird mash-up of a movie.

“Sex, death and the extremely weird intersect – or perhaps that should be intertwine – to unnerving effect in The Untamed… This unarguably disturbing and compelling cinematic UFO has cult potential in the same way as other sexually charged essays in the uncanny, notably Jonathan Glazer’s Under the Skin and Andrzej Zulawski’s notorious tentacle-laden 1981 film Possession, with which it shares a distinctive creepiness.” — Jonathan Romney, Screendaily

Screening With This Feature

Oh What a Wonderful Feeling 2016

Director

Festivals

Cannes (Critics’ Week), Toronto, London, Vancouver 2016
15 minutes

At night, a truck stop becomes a sinister realm of mystery.