Infinity Pool

James, an unsuccessful writer, and Em, a rich and glamorous heiress, take a vacation at the luxury resort of Li Tolqa, but are bored. At least until they meet the eccentric couple formed by Alban and Gabi, who know the local traditions very well. Gabi seduces James and the latter suffers the mysterious and perverse charm of the woman, but the situation degenerates when, after an evening of drinking, James runs over a local passerby with his car. From then on, the writer will know the darker side of Li Tolqa and its peculiar traditions.

Strengthened by the critical consensus obtained with Possessor, Brandon Cronenberg continues on the slope started with Infinity Pool, another ambitious sci-fi horror film that transfigures the anxieties of the contemporary world.

Social inequality and the desire for limitless transgression of the rich and powerful are the basis of a descent into hell that draws on a full-bodied genre tradition and whose drift can be guessed from the first minutes. Mia Goth once again plays her perverse seduction cards playing Gabi, a dark lady who captures James’ repressed desires at her first glance, leading him into a spiral of abjections that bears the words “fatal” in large letters. A plot that has already been seen countless times, which has the merit of contextualizing everything in the fictitious place of Li Tolqa, a country that could be in South-East Asia, but also reminiscent of Eastern Europe – in fact the film is set and co-produced in Croatia – and which seems to subsume the entire dark side of Capital.
The White Lotus meets Black Mirror, it could be summarized, without going too far from faithfully rendering the idea of Brandon Cronenberg’s operation. And it is no coincidence that the first references aroused refer to television series, because Infinity Pool resembles a dilated episode of a TV series, with the inevitable orgiastic drift skilfully masked by hallucinogenic effects and a glossy look, which helps to throw away the stone and together hide the hand. Social criticism, confused and maximalist, thus gets lost in a script that has the merit of describing a potentially interesting milieu but fails to make it tangible.
Li Tolqa is a holiday resort rich in mysterious traditions and at the same time an example of an unprecedented marriage between magic and scientific progress, but the potential narrative junctions are hinted at and abandoned, thrown into the confusion of a story that prefers to take refuge in the comfort zone of the most classic of dystopian nightmares. It is as if the elements that in the cinema of David, i.e. Cronenberg father, are part of a mysterious canvas, woven in a constant balance between visual research and narrative suspense, in the cinema of his son Brandon were trivialized and emptied of meaning.

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