On this week’s Bandpicked, the ferocious rock/punk trio Le Butcherettes pick eight films you probably shouldn’t watch with your parents.
Originally hailing from Guadalajara, Mexico but now based in LA, Le Butcherettes have been raising hell since 2007, through bloody-aproned live shows and three fiercely confrontational albums. Their phenomenal last record, A Raw Youth, was produced by The Mars Volta/At the Drive-In’s Omar Rodriguez-Lopez and featured guest appearances from John Frusciante and Iggy Pop.
I asked head Butcherette, Teri Gender Bender, for a list of the films she feels would not be suitable for family viewing, and Teri obliged with a disturbing bunch of classics. But Teri also snuck in a bonus couple of films that would make for a perfect cinema date with the folks.
But first, let’s start with a film that’s hard to watch in anyone’s company…
Salò, or the 120 Days of Sodom (Dir: Pier Paolo Pasolini)
Me and my mother accidentally came upon this film while skimming through the television on a late Sunday night. As soon as we landed on Salo we were instantly hooked. At one point my mother didn’t know whether or not the movie was real, she thought that we probably came across some snuff footage, but I told her to calm down. I intently watched the movie until the end.
My mother couldn’t fathom the tongue slicing scene. She kissed me goodnight and went off to bed. After the movie came to an end, I couldn’t sleep the whole night. This movie changed my perception of horror. It’s a groundbreaking piece that takes a jab to the dark side of politicians and their perversities. Plus, it’s based on a nauseating book called “120 Days of Sodomy” by one of my favourite authors Marquis de Sade.
Caligula (Dir: Tinto Brass)
Even though Malcolm McDowell (he plays Caligula) doesn’t like this movie and thinks it’s complete garbage he can’t deny the fact that Caligula is the inspiration for many iconic and much loved shows, like Game of Thrones. The way this film was introduced to me was through my art class at the UNIVER right outside of La Gran Plaza. For those of you who know what I’m talking about, it’s very rare for a teacher to have his students dissect and watch Caligula.
The acting and sets are amazing and I love the scenes in which Malcolm McDowell and Helen Mirren feature. It’s based on real life events. And again, I enjoy this film because it exposes the perversities of of one of the most diabolical and demented leaders… yet, you can’t help but also enjoy his incestuous relationship with his sister and his love for his horse.
Under the Skin (Dir: Jonathan Glazer)
Under The Skin features my favourite Scarlett Johansson role. It makes me so happy that she did this film and saw the importance in the script. The visuals and soundscapes of this film are penetrating. It gave me a whole unique and different perception to the feel of Scotland. I watched this film without a clue of its existence which means I had never seen any trailers, so watching the ending with virgin eyes made this film an instant cult film in my little black book of Teri’s Cult World Films. The blankness in Scarlett’s character reminds me at times of a little voice of mine that was born this way.
The Witch (Dir: Robert Eggers)
Still to this day I get sporadic nightmares due to having watched this sinister and soul devouring movie three times. I can’t believe The Witch was Robert Eggers first film. It’s a righteous film. Every detail of the place, the era and the setting are right on point. The first time I saw this film I cried happy tears. The ending scene for me represents the divine justice of evil, but not in the sense of “bad” but in the sense of “finding one self” despite going through a trial of never ending suffering. It may be a horror film but it is filled with beautiful metaphors and it clenches itself onto your psyche.
La Nana & Crystal Fairy (Dir: Sebastian Silva)
La Nana is the most recent movie that I have managed to see. This one felt so close to reality and the maid’s reality really hit hard in my mind. The director’s/writer Sebastian Silva’s craft of being able to explore the psychology of the maid and of the family whom she works for, is the biggest strength and every take is raw dog beautiful. Most of the film takes place indoors and still you manage to grasp the essence of Chile.
Plus, I also really love Crystal Fairy, another one of Sebastian Silva’s films, in which yet again he unveils all the textures of a modern millennial social malcontent, and the way he exposes cultural clashes and the age defying sense of awkward brilliance. Sebastian Silva has a great talent for storytelling and the editing in his films is always stellar – not to mention his movie Crystal Fairy inspired us to name our new band (Dale, Buzz, Omar and Me).
Possession (Dir: Andrzej Zulawski)
This movie is considered to be one of the most surreal cult films of all time. It is eerie, dark yet most of the film is set during daytime, while not taking any of the diabolical atmosphere away from the air at all. It starts off with a couple having a quarrel, and you think that maybe just maybe the woman is being stubborn… but as you keep watching it takes the most unusual twists and it leaves a stench in your mouth every time the woman enters a room. I wish I could spoil more of this but it is against my will to spoil such a great film to virgin eyes and for those who have seen this one you know what I’m talking about.
The tunnel scene…. please, that scene is a work of art. The milk being splashed all over, her beautiful eye lids rolling backwards onto themselves over and over again. This film found it’s way to me quite spontaneously. I was going through the Z section of cinema directors at my university’s library and the film’s title “Possession” struck me as intriguing. The ending of this film is still a mystery to me and thank goodness for such a powerful mystery.
Breakfast on Pluto (Dir: Neil Jordan)
This movie. Wow. This movie. I was lucky enough to watch this on the Big Screen in Guadalajara. I instantly loved the feel and the look of the film. Cillian Murphy is one of my favorite actors and you can’t help but become infatuated with the character he portrays.
A Clockwork Orange (Dir: Stanley Kubrick)
This is one of my most favourite films ever. Every scene is iconic or as horrific as it can be. This is one exception where the movie is just as good as the book (written by Anthony Burgess) if not better. My father showed me this movie when I was 5 years old and at first I hated it.
I hated Alex’s wicked and evil ways… but as I grew older and rewatched, I realized it wasn’t Alex’s fault, in a way he was a result of the decaying controlling society in which he lived; his parents never understood him plus he had one redeeming quality… his obsession with Beethoven. It’s a sexual, violent, Russian-slang oriented film perfectly crafted by the greatest director of our time: Stanley Kubrick.
And one film you should definitely watch with your dad… La Danza De La Realidad (Dir: Alejandro Jodrowsky)
I’ve always been a big admirer of poetical visual metaphors and everything in this movie is just this and yet it manages to extend itself into a deeper yet personal magical world; a world that pertains to the history of Jodorowsky’s father and his life. There are so many scenes in this movie that make my eyes weep. This is a very mystical and autobiographical movie based on the life of Alejandro’s father and of Alejandro himself.
I remember that me and my friends drove from Los Angeles to San Francisco to catch a showing of this film in a hidden underground theater in the lurking corners of the down town area. It was empty except for a few other people. I managed to overhear that the other people in the small room where from Mexico and I could hear in their conversation that they were really excited to see Jodorowsky’s new film. After the film ended, I was covered in tears and left the place in total euphoria but my friends and the other two people who went to see it did not get it at all. They were expecting old school Jodorowsky… so I remember feeling a bit confused as to how someone can watch this film and not get it. You WILL fucking get it. Now. Watch it and get it. Fuck!
And one film you should definitely watch with your mum… Gloria (Dir: John Cassavetes)
Gloria is a movie that has been very important to me because it reminds me of strength and human resilience. IF you are in need of an action/heroine film this is the one for you. Gena Rowlands is a phenomenal actress and she plays Gloria as if it were her subconscious. I happened to come across this film randomly. I was organising my friend’s large collection of movies and Gloria struck my eyes. I immediately put it into the DVD player and the grainy feel to the film’s texture (70s-ish) gave my eyes a tasteful satisfaction of a city life getaway.
Watching this movie you feel like you can almost smell the surroundings of which Gloria finds herself in. Watching her character grow from start to finish is a very rewarding journey and I think it is worth a the watch especially if you are in need of some personal inspiration.