WILD TALES – Review by Susan Granger

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Opening with one of the shortest and most amusing segments, Argentinean filmmaker Damian Szifron’s unconventional anthology is built around the psychological concept of revenge.
“Pasternak” deals with a fateful encounter on a plane, as a suave music critic (Dario Grandinetti) begins a conversation with a beautiful model (Maria Marull), seated across the aisle. Within moments, they discover they’re not the only people in business class with a connection to the model’s ex-boyfriend, Gabriel Pasternak. Think “Twilight Zone.” Read on…

“Rats” revolves around a waitress (Julieta Zylbergberg) in a roadside diner who discovers that her only customer (Cesar Bordon) is the loan shark who drove her father to suicide. When the ex-con cook (Rita Cortese) learns the truth, retribution seems inevitable.

As the cautionary “Road to Hell” begins, a rich, arrogant businessman (Leonardo Sbarglia) is driving his shiny, new Audi, rudely giving the finger to a redneck (Walter Donado) in an old Peugeot. Then when the Audi gets a flat tire, road rage takes over.

In “Bombita,” a Buenos Aires demolition engineer (Ricardo Darin), whose car keeps getting towed in streets that don’t have NO PARKING signs, destroys his career and his marriage.

“The Deal” finds a wealthy patriarch (Oscar Martinez) paying his gardener (German de Silva) to take the blame for a hit-and-run accident caused by his spoiled son (Alan Dalcz).

Finally, “Til Death Do Us Part” occurs during a festive wedding reception in which the bride (Erica Rivas) discovers that the groom (Diego Gentile) is cheating on her.

Writer/director Damian Szifron confidently links these diverse short stories around the same behavioral theme: what happens when people are pushed to the edge. It’s an intriguing and compelling concept.

On the Granger Movie Gauge of 1 to 10, “Wild Tales” is an inventive 9, one of the most entertaining Foreign Language films of 2014.

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Susan Granger

Susan Granger

Susan Granger is a product of Hollywood. Her natural father, S. Sylvan Simon, was a director and producer at R.K.O., M.G.M. and Columbia Pictures; her adoptive father, Armand Deutsch, produced movies at M.G.M. As a child, Susan appeared in movies with Abbott & Costello, Red Skelton, Lucille Ball, Margaret O'Brien and Lassie. She attended Mills College in California, studying journalism with Pierre Salinger, and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, Phi Beta Kappa, with highest honors in journalism. During her adult life, Susan has been on radio and television as an anchorwoman and movie/drama critic. Her newspaper reviews have been syndicated around the world, and she has appeared on American Movie Classics cable television. In addition, her celebrity interviews and articles have been published in REDBOOK, PLAYBOY, FAMILY CIRCLE, COSMOPOLITAN, WORKING WOMAN and THE NEW YORK TIMES, as well as in PARIS MATCH, ELLE, HELLO, CARIBBEAN WORLD, ISLAND LIFE, MACO DESTINATIONS, NEWS LIMITED NEWSPAPERS (Australia), UK DAILY MAIL, UK SUNDAY MIRROR, DS (France), LA REPUBBLICA (Italy), BUNTE (Germany), VIP TRAVELLER (Krisworld) and many other international publications through SSG Syndicate. Susan also lectures on the "Magic and Mythology of Hollywood" and "Don't Take It Personally: Conquering Criticism and other Survival Skills," originally published on tape by Dove Audio.