Close Up

23 October 2019: The Wild Boys


The Wild Boys
Bertrand Mandico, 2017, 110 min
French with English subtitles

"Early 20th century La Réunion: five delinquent boys commit a ghastly crime at school. Their punishment? A mysterious disciplinary on a cruel captain’s ship. Yet when the boys arrive on the shores of a gorgeous paradise island, they succumb to the earthly delights of its unusually sexy, luxurious and sticky vegetation, leading to a metamorphosis that is less body horror more body ecstasy. Director Bertrand Mandico is recognised for his camp, artificial and film-literate style in his short films, but The Wild Boys (his first feature length) is a next step: as abundant with ideas and images as the islands’ plants. Conjuring The Invasion of the Body Snatchers’ idea of the vegetal invading the human body and mind, The Wild Boys shows how one can literally outgrow toxic masculinity with the help of some ecosexuality." – Ben Driscoll

Part of Ben Driscoll's Live Cultures programme