N A V I
G A T E

Home
A Brief Introduction
Years in Review
Films Ranked: 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005
Current Criticism
Search Criticism
Past Criticism
Top 10 Lists
Notable Short Films
Links
Contact Me

Tale of Tales

Director:  Matteo Garrone
Year Released:  2015
Rating:  1.0

A trio of stories by Giambattista Basile get stitched together with a bent needle: the Queen of Longtrellis (Salma Hayek) consumes the heart of a sea creature to have a son, only to see that son become infatuated with another boy (to her dismay), the lusty King of Strongcliff (Vincent Cassel) is enamored with a young lady (Stacy Martin) from afar, but in reality she has the body of a wrinkled witch and the King of Highhills (Toby Jones) takes on a fast-growing flea as a pet ... that perversely causes his only daughter (Bebe Cave) to be kidnapped by an ogre. The strangeness of the stories is evident, but it doesn't have lasting appeal in the hands of Garrone, who's too measured and muted for the fantasy genre (think of Branagh doing Cinderella) - the CGI is fine, but emotionally it's at an arm's length. Garrone's use of his native Italy makes for a neat, rustic backdrop, but if he was trying for grit and bawdiness à la Pasolini he's quite a long way off.

Return to the Previous Page

© Copyright 2019 Matthew Lotti.