Tuesday, 12 September 2017
Marlina the Murderer (5 Stars)
This is the 24th film in the Stuttgart Fantasy Film Festival.
After the strong disagreement that I had about "Bad Match" I was almost afraid to express my views on "Marlina the Murderer". I needn't have worried. We were unanimous in praising it. Not one person had a single negative thing to say about it. It's a slow-moving film, in stark contrast to most of the films being shown, but it's effective in what it does.
The film has the style of a spaghetti western, even though it's set in Indonesia. Marlina was married to a farmer in a remote part of Indonesia. Her husband has recently died, and now she's struggling to survive by herself. Her farm is visited by seven men. They tell her in a very matter-of-fact manner that they intend to steal her animals and then rape her. Two of the men take her animals away in a truck -- 10 sheep, 10 goats, 10 chickens and 3 pigs -- while the other five men remain with her. She cooks chicken soup for them, which she poisons, killing four of the men. The fifth man doesn't eat anything and succeeds in raping her, but she manages to cut off his head during sex.
The rest of the film involves her attempts to get justice, including retrieving her animals from the other two men. The cinematography is breathtaking, one of the most beautiful films I've ever seen. I can hardly recommend this film enough.