October 25, 2021

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‘Medusa’ Review: Religious Hysteria Fantasy in the Political Present

4 min read

Brazilian writer-director Anita Rocha de Silveira debuted an interesting feature six years ago with “Kill Me Please”, a unique antique but restless cocktail of teenage sexual awakening, giello thriller material and art-house ambiguity. Its courage extends between the slightly larger canvas and the slightly older heroines of “Medusa”. Again offering a satirical satire on sexuality and violence among emotionally flaming young people, this sophomore effort adds more explicit socio-political criticism.

The excitement of the coil-spring that “keeps” tense despite telling its elaborate story becomes a bit slack here, which makes for less success. Yet, the indomitableness of de Silvira’s notion মধ্যে in which enrolling in a higher Christian college secretly engages ন makes cautionary frustration moral-and his deliberately over-the-top aesthetic render “Medusa” is a compelling mixed bag. It may miss the bull-eye, but not for lack of interesting ideas or style.

Fans of the previous film will immediately feel the logical progression of its content, as the first few minutes here present the wickedness of the girl-crowd, then an equally bizarre musical number. Eight young women in doll-like masks chase another woman on the street at night, “Whore! Easy! We’ll nail you to the cross! They beat her, then forced her to become a “devoted, virtuous woman, subject to the Lord.” A woman cut in octave, now dressed in a virgin white chiffon, is singing a religious pop song on stage at the organization The Holy Messiah. When that performance ends, succeeded by Pastor Gilharm (Thiago Fregosso) ‘s latest speech / Harangu, Michelle and Lord’s Treasurer look on their phones with excited eyes – the previous night’s bitdown video has already received 10,000 likes.

It’s a scary version of “Christian charity”, then, that wide-eyed Clarissa (Bruna G) suddenly finds herself, “rescued” from a less developed lifestyle by relatives. She is welcomed into the home of her cousin Mariana (Marie Oliveira), who became the second second-in-command of the BFF and Queen Bee Michelle (Lara Tremoroux). The social sphere of their school is actually a stereotype among privileged princesses and offends everyone else. Only here the moonlight is considered less gifted as an attacker of the same age, while the boys seem to be in paramilitary training for some kind of reactionary revolution সব all sanctified by Jesus, or so they believe.

Mariana Melissa Garcia (Bruna Linzmeyer), a local celebrity who disappeared after being horribly crippled for doing nude scenes in a movie, is obsessed with other alleged sins. That stillness is heightened when he hits himself in the face in the face of a terrified woman fleeing a pious girl gang. As a result of being fired from her job at a plastic surgery clinic, Mariana rents a different kind of medical facility, where she suspects that the elusive Melissa may be hiding – or Komotos, like many patients. She sparks with the male nurse Lucas (Felipe Frazওo). But he is not a class-appropriate object of aspiration, and in fact, the possibility that any wish acted could lessen the wrath of his masked sisterhood.

If “Kill Me Please” is to play with the slasher convention (while never providing standard gore or kill counts), “Medusa” plays with the cinematic vocabulary of the near future sci-fi, religion as its big brother. De Silvera has no question about the rise of crypto-fascism by morality in Brazil and beyond. It is also increasingly clear that this kind of overly false movement – here “boys” keep no secret of blaming women for their own lustful passions – has its characters rushing to express a climactic, feminist (and feminist) rage.

But when the director’s previous attempt was to shake a Celtzer bottle dangerously shortly after it exploded, the subtraction in the “Medusa” explosion fell into sufficiently increasing excitement. It’s long but intrinsic, only Mariana has really evolved as a character (Clarissa is more or less forgotten after her prominent acquaintance), and very little use is made of subsidiaries. There are cleverly separate sequences, such as when Michelle records a social-media instruction on “taking the perfect Christian selfie,” or when the boys do a kind of explanatory-dance calisthenic routine in their camo pants. Yet the larger themes and the concepts of the story are considered evil as they fail to gain too much traction in fragmented screenplays or slack pacing.

Where “Medusa” carries a confident purpose is among its design elements, which are deliberately stylish – strongly influenced by “sex” neon colors (there are many pink and blue) that turn religious fervor into a glamorous teen disco. Appropriately, the soundtrack is like the occasional tongue-in-cheek theft with synthetic old covers, such as “House of the Rising Sun” modified so that virgin girl groups like “I’ll be a humble and beautiful housewife”. ”De Silveira often seems to be tapping into the real“ Saspiria ”in conversational, situational and aesthetic references. This time, however, it is not Satan in detail, but a perverted version of his holy enmity.

The actors play, although these politicized, semi-surreal variations in “Heathers” ultimately suggest chewing most of them on less defined characters rather than simple satire. Not too much of a recession, “Medusa” still suggests that its director is just two projects away from finding the perfect descriptive vessel for its unique sensitivity.

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