Reviews of WR: Mysteries of the Organism
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Rodney Welch is wrong. Makavejev’s film is just as revolutionary as Last Tango, but in a slightly different sense. WR is focused on sexuality rather than sensuality, free love rather than eroticism, sex as recreation rather than sex as therapy. Other than the fact that they’re both X-rated erotic art films from the early 1970s, I don’t see the comparison at all. Sorry, Rodney, but that’s what happens when your profile picture is you in a fedora and beard looking dismissively at the camera like a middle-aged hipster.
- Currently 4.0/5 Stars.
Dušan Makavejev’s darkly humorous film is a fanciful, bizarre collage of documentary footage, free-form fiction, found footage, narration, and musical numbers.
Starting off as a satiric (but real) documentary about controversial psychiatrist/philosopher Wilhelm Reich, the film begins to cross over into a fictional story about a young Yugoslavian revolutionary/Reich-follower’s seduction of a Russian figure skater. Throughout the film, he also juxtaposes scenes from a Stalinist propaganda film, shots of performance artist Tuli Kupferberg in a solider’s uniform stalking New Yorkers on the street, “plaster casting”, transsexual monologues, and more. It sounds silly and outrageous, and it absolutely is, but it works. By making grotesque those things which keep us so serious (communism in Russia, sexual paradigm in America and human sexuality in general, psychology), Makavejev seems to hope for a better sense of humor about those things, important self-realization, and a greater flexibility of love and mind and body (and hopefully in this, a cure for what ails humanity). It is offensive, bold, funny, fascinating, and the work of a true anti-authoritarian.
The final result is truly a wonder.
- Currently 5.0/5 Stars.