A bummer, but one that manages to stick to its depraved convictions until the strange and bitter end.
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Director Matteo Garrone's measured approach and soulfully humane focus combine to dignify the characters, allowing the tale of solitude, longing and sorrow to inch quietly under the viewer's skin.
Mahieux gives a bravura performance as the title character. Director Garrone keeps the story involving even though it doesn't quite live up to the star's strong talents.
Garrone's movie finds a disconcerting niche between edgy character thriller and black comedy.
At moments, the story skirts uncomfortably close to the grotesque. But this atmospheric oddity delivers a surprisingly sensitive take on the overwhelming ache of loneliness.
Skillfully directed and adroitly acted.
An effectively macabre and fiendishly entertaining tale of lust, unrequited love and the fine art of taxidermy.
Both the actor and the character deserve a better movie, one that might have channeled the latter's desires into more than just a few rote genre thrills.
The screenplay evokes this psychosexual power struggle with perfect accuracy and finely tuned performances.
Director and co-writer Matteo Garrone infuses The Embalmer with a spooky eroticism. The film is dark, both in theme and visual composition.