Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Worth Missing: The Family That Eats Soil

Five minutes into "The Family That Eats Soil", i felt like leaving the cinema. But the "educational" hook had me, the feeling that "i should know what people are into", if only to be able to criticize it.

Then about an hour later i realized that i wasn't seeing "what people are into" either... i was just wasting my time...

...Those "gruesome" scenes with raspberry jam for blood and needlessly needless pseudo-sex or violence scenes could not mask the fact that this was merely an adult version of those moronic experimental kids shows that somehow made it onto tv in the 70s. The ones you settled for watching when sesame street wasn't on. We're talking just one hairs breadth above static here... no plot, no message, no story, just a pastiche of boring scenes, one after another.
If you're the kind of person who has been conned into thinking that inkblots have deep meaningful messages, that dada was revolutionary or that white noise is great music, then maybe you'll like "The Family That Eats Soil". As for myself, i almost slept through it.
The guy who made it, Khavn De La Cruz, actually seems like he may have some interesting ideas, for instance you can check out his Manifesto for a Filmless Philippines, and the film actually seems interesting if you read what it says about it on his site, but note his point number ten, where he says "Take care of the quantity. God will take care of the quality"... i guess that's what he aimed for here, and so if all 75 minute movies are equal, then i guess you can't go wrong whatever you choose to watch.

Some free advice regardless: go watch something else!

P.S. i guess i did learn something fropm this movie. i learnt that the getting pretentious reviews using the word "punk" in them doesn't actually mean yuor movie is any better than what you leave in the toilet after your morning ump. Check out, for instance, the canned quote i have found on several internet sites describing this wste of time:

With his crisp, 75-minute The Family That Eats Soil, Khavn De La Cruz provided a hyper-condensed punk-trash take on Philippine family politics. At times it plays like a de-Pasolinized version of Takashi Miike's Visitor Q, at others like an absurdist experimental bomba flick. Yet it always feels as if cinema is about to end and only no-holds-barred videomaking can save the world.


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1 comment:

  1. I saw this movie from Filipino rebel Khavn, on the Roterdam Film Festival 2005. The audience hated it, were insulted even, probably because of the occasional brutal violence and sex. but I liked this movie a lot.

    It's about a family that, as the title says, eats soil. this can be seen as a metaphor for the strong family bonds in the Philippines. The family from the title also engage in several criminal activities, such as selling drugs and even murder.

    The movie is bizarre from the opening credits on, where we see a clay animation of a violent rape and killing. The atmosphere in the rest of the movie is pretty dark, but it's still a comedy. Because of the soil eating, the movie is even referred to as brown comedy.

    If your into the really bizarre, and are curious about Filipino cinema, try to see this movie. Or another film from it's director Khavn. It's quite a unique experience.