Director: Hélène Cattet, Bruno Forzani
Cast: Elina Löwensohn, Stéphane Ferrara, Bernie Bonvoisin
Watch Let the Corpses Tan online in the UK: Amazon Prime Video
Every now and then, a film comes along that makes no sense whatsoever. Let the Corpses Tan is one of those films – and you wouldn’t have it any other way.
The film is the latest offering from directors Hélène Cattet and Bruno Forzani, a pair with a taste for retro exploitation and a knack for making it look good. It’s a movie where style trumps substance, where style is substance, and where what little substance there is gets served with as much style as humanly possible.
The story is at once incredibly simple and impossible to understand. The set-up introduces us to a group of men with a 250kg horde of stolen gold. They rush through the desert expanse of Spain (or somewhere similar) to find a hideout from the cops. Stumbling across a town that’s home to an artist, a muse and a pair of coppers, they collide with this remote group far from normal society, and conflict inevitably erupts.
The ensuing shootout is something horrible and marvellous to behold. Cattet and Forzani infuse the sweltering intensity of a Western with an Italian crime flick fetish and their own pulpy, Giallo-tinged visuals, resulting in a montage of dazzling tropes and cliches, each homage more knowingly shallow than the last. Bullets, women painted in gold, people’s insides on the outside – they all stack up with violent, garish, gleeful abandon. It’s like watching Ben Wheatley’s Free Fire on three screens at the same time.
Wrapping up in 90 minutes of crash zooms and pans, it’s a bewildering, bonkers piece of cinema that stays just short enough to avoid fatigue, while running for long enough to make it clear that plot and characters aren’t the aim here. Lurching from sickening saturation to eye-popping negatives, who needs narrative logic when you’ve got such style?
Let the Corpses Tan is available to watch online on Amazon Prime Video as part of a £5.99 monthly subscription.