Bertrand Mandico's The Wild Boys (2017), which is receiving an exclusive global online premiere on MUBI, is showing September 14 – October 14, 2018 as a Special Discovery.
French director Bertrand Mandico shared with us the films he thought about before, during, and after making his feature debut, The Wild Boys:
Matango: Attack of the Mushroom People (Ishiro Honda, 1963): The island and its fauna and flora, the mushroom-men, the sinking. A sublime film.
Lord Jim (Richard Brooks, 1965): The tempest sequence in the opening and the cowardice of Lord Jim—an amazing film.
A High Wind in Jamaica (Alexander Mackendrick, 1965): For the confusion of the captain played by Antony Quinn, the phlegm of James Coburn and the beauty of his young crew.
The Sailor Who Fell from Grace with the Sea (Lewis John Carlino, 1976): For the erotic figure of the Captain (Kris Kristofferson) and its clique of violent boys.
Remorques (Jean Grémillon, 1941): A romantic and captivating film with sequences on the boat that were inspiring.
Horrors of Malformed Men (Teruo Ishii, 1969): Teruo Ishii is a filmmaker who troubles me and provokes me. By adapting Edogawa Rampo, he brings us into an organic and grotesque islander fantasy.
Apocalypse Now (Francis Ford Coppola, 1979): For the baroque trip in the jungle.
Sorcerer (William Friedkin, 1977): For the Gothic trip in the jungle.
Profound Desire of the Gods (Shohei Imamura, 1968): The masterpiece of Imamura, an esoteric and environmental fresco on an island. Old beliefs, cruelty, and modernity are confronted in a cloudy eroticism.
Burden of Dreams (Les Blank, 1982): In this making-of, the insane figure of Kinski in the jungle is even more worrying than Herzog. Shot with determination.
The Young Ones (Luis Buñuel, 1960): The only American film from Buñuel, the desire and the island.
Hell in the Pacific (John Boorman, 1968): The island again and again, but here the desire becomes an absurd fight.
Zombie (Lucio Fulci, 1979): For the surrealistic underwater scene, a shark bitten by a zombie, the blood and the lagoon.
Lord of the Flies (Peter Brook, 1963): Perfect adaptation, a matrix film for The Wild Boys.
The Saga of Anatahan (Josef von Sternberg, 1953): An islander film shot in studio, a lot of desire again, a queen and her hive.
Water Wrackets (Peter Greenaway, 1975): Shooting the water.
Young Aphrodites (Nikos Koundouros, 1963): Scenes on the beach, of youth, lost paradise.
The Beast (Walerian Borowczyk, 1975): Opening sequence with horses, the sex geyser of the beast.
Mandara (Akio Jissoji, 1971): A director that I love, wrongly forgotten. The scenes with the woman attacked on the beach are as violent, unbearable, modest as they are sublime.
Querelle (Rainer Werner Fassbinder 1982): Fassbinder and Genet meet again for a sexual and colorful film. There is a mention of Querelle in The Wild Boys.
Asparagus (Suzan Pitt, 1979): The flora sexualized.
Shivers (David Cronenberg, 1975): Cronenberg's film most influenced by Ballard/Burroughs. The virus doesn't turn you into a monster but into a pleasure-seeker.
Onibaba (Kaneto Shindo, 1964): The mask, the erotism and the tall grass.
Confessions of an Opium Eater (Albert Zugsmith, 1962): For the sequence of the captain (Vincent Price) under Opium… Sublime superimpositions.
Island of Lost Souls (Erle C. Kenton, 1932): Charles Laughton is already thinking of The Night of the Hunter when he plays Moreau in its white costume which contrast strongly with the studio's tropical night.
Mishima: A Life in Four Chapters (Paul Schrader, 1985): The construction of the film with its rupture of style which paradoxically forms a coherent style.
Fantastic Planet (René Laloux, 1973): For the sublime and free imagery.
Naked Pursuit (Toshio Okuwaki, 1969): A film that reminds me of the minimalist and radical apparatus Koji Wakamatsu. Here, a woman is followed by a man onto a beach of black sand, where from time to time the color erupts.
The Sea Wolf (Michael Curtiz, 1941): For its boat in a studio and its permanent fog.
A Midsummer Night's Dream (Max Reinhardt/William Dieterle, 1935): The usage of the star filter, the magical double exposure. The apparition of Kenneth Anger as a kid (at least that's what he says).
Hercules in the Haunted World (Mario Bava, 1961): The studio and its unrealistic colors pushed to the extreme, the organic caves and ultra props.
The Fog (John Carpenter, 1980): Bright eyes in the fog.
The Mad Masters (Jean Rouch, 1955): Its trances, as beautiful as they are worrying, influence the abandoning scenes in The Wild Boys.
Lola Montes (Max Ophüls, 1955): The inserted story in the memories, the masked groom, the dancing camera.
The Elephant Man (David Lynch, 1980): Absolute Black & White.
The Strange Vice of Mrs. Wardh (Sergio Martino, 1971): For the wonderful music of Nora Orlandi, the only woman who was making music in Italy. I use this original soundtrack in my film.
Macbeth (Roman Polanski, 1971): The incredible scenes of witches in what is, for me, the most beautiful adaptation of Macbeth in cinema.
Treasure Island (Raúl Ruiz, 1985): Visual inventions, surrealism, and absolute freedom.
MEN AND WOMEN
Space Pirate Captain Harlock (Rintaro, 1978): A romantic animation series which I was fascinated by as a kid, particularly the figure of the sylvidres: Femmes fatales from space. Seeing them die in the episodes was heartbreaking for me.
Fighting Elegy (Seijun Suzuki, 1966): The Japanese uniform, the teenaged young boys, violent and clumsy.
Noroît (Jacques Rivette, 1976): Rivette and his female characters who plays pirates, free team and esoteric. It's a director whose freedom and love for his actresses inspires me.
Rumble Fish / The Outsiders (Francis Ford Coppola, 1983/83): Two brothers, films of romantic groups of men.
Billy Bud (Peter Ustinov, 1962): Terence Stamp, the angel-sailor.
Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence (Nagisa Oshima, 1983): David Bowie, the angel in uniform.
The Night Porter (Liliana Cavani, 1974): I don't like that film, but I like Bogarde and Rampling. And the troubling clothes and objectively beautiful Rampling: suspenders and cap.
The End of August at Hotel Ozone (Jean Schmidt, 1967): Group of girls in nature and survival…
Zero for Conduct / L’Atalante (Jean Vigo, 1933/34): The biggest director of desire, the pillow fight in Zero for Conduct, Père Jules and the crew in L’Atalante, the underwater scenes… All the shots are haunting me and inspire me.
Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors (Sergei Parajanov, 1964): Because like Vigo's films, it's a film which never stop nourishing me.
A Clockwork Orange (Stanley Kubrick, 1971): I've seen it again and again to embrace it and also get away from it.
Un chant d’amour (Jean Genet, 1950): The most beautiful French film.
Kenneth Anger: All his films
The Blood of a Poet (Jean Cocteau, 1932): Cocteau forever.