The Untamed – La región salvaje – is a Mexican/Danish science fiction erotic fantasy film directed by Amat Escalante from a screenplay co-written with Gibrán Portela. It stars Kenny Johnston, Simone Bucio and Jesús Meza.
The fragile existence of a young housewife and her working class family is thrown off balance when a mysterious stranger comes into their lives and convinces them that in the nearby woods, inside an isolated cabin, dwells something not of this world – a mysterious creature – that could be the answer to all of their problems, or a source of both pleasure and destruction..
Strand Releasing is releasing The Untamed on DVD in North America on November 7, 2017.
“The Untamed is an examination of the strange otherworldly nature of desire, the way sex is often out of joint with our desires and expectations, even with our identities. How we are so often unfulfilled. The twining tentacles and the slurping bodies have hints of body horror, but are ultimately no stranger than the scenes of human coupling captured in explicit detail from unconventional angles: fornication red in tooth and claw.” John Bleasdale, Cinevue
“Andrzej Zulawski’s 1980s film Possession is a key touchstone, made clear from the penetrating opening shot alone, as is the work of fellow Mexican filmmaker Carlos Reygadas. Escalante concocts a heady potion jam-packed full of chaos and confusion as he explores homophobic attitudes, unhealthy relationships, misogyny and a burning desire for sexual liberation in Mexico.” Katherine McLaughlin, SciFi Now
“The unexplained, slimy creature is symbolic of Alejandra’s own desire, the longing to escape from reality and return to a more primitive state – which too is flawed, as the creature she seeks to fornicate with does not simply provide happiness, it threatens to disrupt, to kill. What transpires is a film that is ineffably disturbing, and brutally bleak…” Stefan Pape, HeyUGuys
” …although the viewer is willing to give Escalante a great deal of leeway in light of the promising opening stretch and recurring emphasis on creepy elements, The Untamed‘s oblique nature eventually, inevitably ceases being interesting and instead just becomes frustrating (with this vibe undoubtedly compounded by the astonishingly deliberate pace).” David Nusair, Reel Film Reviews
“The tonal shifts make one feel disoriented, and there are times when it’s unclear if Escalante is going for character-driven melodrama, queasy body horror or something in between. Still, The Untamed is almost hypnotic in its languid pace; the creature effects are presented in a matter-of-fact manner that makes them all the more believable and doubles their horror.” Chris Evangelista, CutPrintFilm
” …DP Manuel Alberto Claro (Nymphomaniac; Melancholia) builds on a particularly effective mounting dread in the lush sequences of ‘nature,’ particularly moments as ugly as they are unforgettable (like Fabian’s naked body in a watery ditch, or an animal orgy in the blown out crater where the creature presumably landed). While nowhere near as bat shit crazy as titles it draws comparison to, The Untamed is an aberrant sexual odyssey, as perverted as it is enticingly subversive.” Nicholas Bell, IONCinema!
“Dominated by a wet, slithery, sexually-invasive sort of mega-squid, it’s a deliberately disorientating mesh of seemingly disparate stories and worlds that may or may not combine to obliquely critique Mexico’s dominant patriarchy. Give it a whirl and see for yourself – if you’re going out for dinner afterwards, maybe avoid the calamari.” Guy Lodge, London Evening Standard