Friday, March 4, 2011
Rubber (2010) Dir. by Quentin Dupieux
When Robert, an inanimate tire, discovers his destructive telepathic powers, he soon sets his sights on a desert town; in particular, a mysterious woman becomes his obsession.
I knew that I wanted to watch Rubber the first time I read the synopsis. I mean, come on, a tire that can kill people? Why the hell wouldn't I want to watch it? It was hard to really get pumped for it considering a good 75% of the reviews for it have been negative. That also doesn't make sense because it still has nearly a 7/10 rating on IMDB, which is damn good. Either way I knew I wanted to watch it, so I did so last night. I had never seen any of Quentin's films so I didn't really know what to expect, but the French have been doing such a good job with horror lately.
The film started out a bit slow and kind of had an old western feel to it, but what the film was doing was incredible. Dupieux actually manages to imbue human qualities in an inanimate object and make it believable. The tire wakes up in the desert, slowly rights itself, and begins wobbling with not particular direction; trying to find it's way out of the desert, just like a normal person would. Using the surroundings and character interaction, Dupieux is able to almost give the tire emotions. Making it visibly angry at times while pursuing his prey. It runs in to normal issues a human stalker would. I kind of felt like he was making fun of the horror genre of film at times, saying that the movies are so basic and unpredictable that he could get an inanimate object to appear just as scary as a killer in a mask with a knife. The sad part is he clearly accomplishes that goal. I felt like it was a normal slasher film while watching it, and it never affected me that the killer was a tire.
The acting in the film isn't all that great most of the time, specifically from the the observers the story is essentially told through. I understand that have a lead character who couldn't speak would be hurtful to the film without some sort of narration, but at times they were down right distracting and annoying. On the other hand, rising star Roxane Mesquida (Sheitan) does an amazing job as the object of the tire's obsession. She brings life to the film in the dull moments, and her beauty is undeniably a selling point for this film. The other person who I enjoyed watching was Wings Hauser (Beastmaster 2, Watchers 3) as the Man in the Wheelchair. Everyone else in the film seems a bit annoying most of the time, but they are definitely essential to the completion of the film.
While Rubber does clearly make fun of the horror and comedy genres, it is also a brilliantly made film. I will be purchasing the DVD for sure, and watch it many times again. As a horror film reviewer I tend to have my favorite types of death sequences, and two of them are exploding heads and decapitations, and this film is filled with nothing but exploding heads and bodies, and it is awesome!!! I highly recommend at least one viewing of Rubber, and then maybe you can see it for the brilliant film it truly is.
Entertainment Value: 8/10 Exploding Bunnies
Cinematic Value: 9/10 Exploding Bunnies