Thursday, May 17, 2012

WOUND: Not Your Daddy's Fetish Film

We recently reported the impending release of the DVD for a little film called Wound as released by Breaking Glass Pictures. Remember that one? The piggy fetish mask with the tongue sticking out of the mouth hole. The preview and one sheet had me thinking we were in for some Nine Inch Nails "Closer" related fetish romp through the twisted mind of people who are "into that sort of thing". I couldn't have been more wrong. Wound cuts deeper. The fetish imagery is used more as a vehicle to discuss the personal pain of childhood trauma and a means to an end, revenge. Director David Blyth shows us how a completely different rabbit hole looks only no one is wearing a bunny outfit; it's all latex pig mask from here on out.


We follow Tanya as she searches for the mother she has never met – a mother (Susan) who gave her up for dead after being abused by her own father who remains stuck in her present life. Tanya returns from the dead to confront and possess Susan with all her deepest fears and desires, sending Susan into a state of madness and gore filled retribution. What follows is an exploration and confrontation into the dark, distorted supernatural world that lurks within us all. A young woman, alone, attempts to fight the demons that begin to haunt her days and nights -- in a series of brutal confrontations with the enemies of the past who want to possess and kill her.

From the outset I realized that the preview and film would not sync up just the way I had previously thought. I was expecting a flood of early 90's industrial music straight off the Wax Trax label with bands like Front 242 assaulting me with pounding beats and lush images of genitals mashing their way, all be it romantically, into a uncharted territory. The film opened with atmospheric soundscapes that spoke to gothic tales of ghosts and haunted houses rather than anything so abrupt. That is not to say that the film opens blandly or without its own varietal of pomp and swagger. From the get go you realize that Wound will be a revenge flick just not in that I Spit On Your Grave kind of way. It's more methodical.

I was almost disgruntled to see more than one scene that reminded me of the James Spader and Maggie Gyllenhaal from the Secretary. I realize that this imagery is quite popular in fetish/dom subcultures, but still a little too close to home. Not that the plot even comes within a inch of The Secretary. We're talking about two completely different movies. I suppose my beef would be that there are plenty of ways to show the relationship between dom and submissive, why use one that is currently in the common collective memory? Is it sexy? That depends on your point of view and of course I don't think any of us will be unzipping our fly in a movie review. You have to balance the erotic imagery with the back story. Do you feel any sympathy at all for your lead? If you don't than it might as well be softcore and I for one have zero problem with a little softcore in my diet.

My issue with the film arises out of a lack of organic flow. The film doesn't just reveal itself to you as a psychological revenge picture with barrels of eroticism. You never know who to "root" for. I suppose you can pick out the victims, but if you don't identify with them you may as well be watching a slasher flick and hoping the big bad fetish slasher wins the day. This comes primarily out of the lack of character development. It's the kind of thing you might be able to pick up on subsequent watching by attaching your own story to our protagonists, but you won't find it as a well constructed part of the plot.  The framework of the story should be established expeditiously, followed by the audience member identifying with the revenger.

My advice to the filmmakers would be to work on this kills. You have developed some strong imagery with the use of several different fetish masks. These masks are absolutely creepy. Wound will disturb you. It's atmosphere is solid between a dark score that doesn't play on some more popular musical selections of the subculture combined with dungeons, night clubs and latex that give you the grand tour. Sure, it could have taken a few more steps into the belly of the beast, but it's not an expose. This is a lifestyle film. It's meant to get under your skin, but the fetish gear is the equivalent of a weapon to this vengeful woman.

My little pet peeve with this film: Why skimp on the castration scene? I don't believe your cutting off a wang. I simply don't. That doesn't mean I'm not holding my Johnson while I'm trying to protect myself from a stray onslaught after witnessing such an aggressive act, but take it out of the spotlight if it comes off more like a practical effect than a death blow. If this is going to be the max out of the special effects sequence with the exception of a man sexually dominating a woman in a pig mask with mud on his ass than you need to bring the realism.

Wound is a competent film that is shot well and may even offer you some interesting camera angles if your into that sort of thing. If you are expecting the trailer in an elongated film version than you will be upset. It's deeper than that but you have to find your own way. If you are a fan of early 90's pop industrial and are hoping that Trent Reznor will make a cameo you might as well hope that MTV starts playing music video again. What you have here is a film that can play on your own conception of revenge, how it is perpetrated and who deserves to be the victim. The horror is in the imagery surrounding a peach stone of psychological warped angst. It might not be for everyone. Fetish stuff isn't always. That's what it's fetish.

Stop by the website to get a more official vision of Wound. Can your Puritanical ideals handle it? Chances are good that you stand a chance. Just follow the bouncing pentagram tattoo.

No comments:

Post a Comment