An inspired visual realization of the strange, hypnotic, seductive music serving as title/theme/soundtrack. Libidinous ennui. Never felt anything quite like it through cinema. Mesmerizing and transformative. Focused on two female (carnival-esque) stripper-performers, but more profoundly an observation of the male gaze, voyeurism, the absurdity of sexuality and desire.
83/100 - Great.
I loved this. I am gay and I loved it even though the main object of the gaze is female this is queer cinema because it is about non normative sexuality. There is incest, taboo behaviour all mixed in with a melancholia born of nostalgia heightened by haunting music and, near the end, almost a dream like haunting cinematography.
3.5 This has a strange appeal, the narcoticesque haze of the performance, the mixed interest/indifference of the audience, the boy's discomfort after she puts his hands on her breast....It's sort of like a weird dream.
'Make me beautiful' Gonzalez's short is about much more than the male gaze as a young woman rejoins her 'mother' for a traveling strip show that gives new meaning to no frills. The underlying melancholy, the self lies and tentative hope within crushed dreams are evident for those willing to look beyond the lingerie and nakedness.
On the one hand it satisfies a late-night young-blooded aestheticism that his brother's music also encapsulates for me (aided here instead by music from Grouper and Julia Holter), and on the other it indulges to the point of crudity a certainly banality or euro-sleaze. Pleasing yet hollow, I'll extend Gonzales another opportunity in the hope it's not all stylish posturing. 2.5
Stylish, atmospheric, compelling and strange. Lynchian, but in a way that makes it seem to be the natural output of a coherent and internalized vision, rather than homage or mere aesthetic. And an emotionally sophisticated take on the (usually intolerable) "lost people seeking connection" trope. Not sure about that 'cathartic' ending... But Gonzalez has caught my attention.