"The Lure", written by Robert Bolesto,
directed by Agnieszka Smoczyńska
When in Sundance watch amazing “The Lure”, a totally crazy, beautifully made new Polish film. It is a mermaid/vampire story directed with self-assurance and taste. The women/fish characters audaciously and successfully negotiate dangerous traps of the concept, the other women are also great. So are the guys: for example the manager of the night club where the mermaids work is played by Zygmunt Malanowicz, the same guy who acted in 1961 Polanski’s “Knife in the water”. In my mind his performance somehow bridges the two films: both are bold, intelligent and exploding with talent.
The director Agnieszka Smoczyńska and the writer Robert Bolesto while telling a fairy tale (modern, therefore appropriately bloody and in your face) treat us, the audience, with rare respect. Uff, thank you!
Yes, I love vampire movies but the subject is not enough to enthuse me. For example: I rarely walk out of a film but in case of the Jarmusch's “Only lovers left alive” just couldn’t stay till the end. Also, on the non-vampiric, but melancholic front - Smoczynska accomplishes more and better than von Trier frequently tries rarely getting it right.
“The Lure” has a weird original title “Corki dancingu” (the daughters of a dance hall?) While I like the export version better, I see that the Polish title also points toward a certain adoption and family dynamics on the screen. Although a subplot, it is also a tasty one.
So let “The Lure” charm you but watch out and don’t get bitten by a mermaid’s sharp teeth. If you meet her live, that is.