Raised as a rigorous vegetarian, doe-eyed freshman Justine following in her parents' footsteps, she is sent off to the reputable Saint-Exupéry Veterinary school where the black sheep of the family, her big sister Alexia, is already studying. There, young virginal Justine, leaving the familial shelter, will abruptly move into a mad new world of school traditions, vicious initiation tests and hard partying, utterly unprepared though for the rough year start only rush week's mandatory hazing can offer. As a result, with Alexia reluctantly showing her the ropes but only halfway, Justine during the long-established trial of raw offal-eating, she will be forced to chew over her devout herbivorous beliefs and swallow a fresh chunk of bright-red rabbit kidney, unknowingly descending deep into her uncharted animalistic tendencies. Before long, repulsion will be replaced with an unprecedented, equally unquenched and palpable craving for raw meat, transforming Justine into a monstrous carnivore ... Written by
'Raw' (French: Grave) is a fearless, disturbing & ultimately unforgettable film, that has the courage to be itself. As my summary states, its Traumatizing & Mesmerizing! Writer-Director Julia Ducournau delivers a tale of violence & cannibalism with the power of a sledgehammer. And lead performer Garance Marillier delivers an outstanding performance!
'Raw' Synopsis: When a young vegetarian undergoes a carnivorous hazing ritual at vet school, an unbidden taste for meat begins to grow in her.
'Raw' is about exploring the inner self & how exposure, to any form or any meat that it maybe, can change your life altogether. The protagonist here, Justine, played by Garance Marillier, a pure vegetarian, is forced to have meat by bullies in her very beginning in the vet school, develops a taste for meat & flesh, which is akin of a dangerous vampire. Her transformation from an innocent vegetarian, to a cannibal obsessed with meat & human-flesh is shocking to the core. 'Raw' narrates her disturbing & graphic journey, with relentlessness. There were times when I looked away from the screen, due to its gruesome content. The faint-hearted, STAY AWAY!
'Raw' is a massive winner because Julia Ducournau is a storyteller of solid merit. Her Writing questions violence & cannibalism with tremendous power & graphicness. While its easy to be put off by the protagonist's violent behavior towards human-flesh, Julia's Superiorly Written Screenplay questions the act of violence in all forms, including our daily food habits, which results in animal killing. Its a twisted tale, with a thought-provoking undertone. Julia's Direction is engrossing. She has handled this disturbing story, with command. Here's a storyteller with some capability! A special mention for the nicely Cinematography by Ruben Impens.
Performance-Wise: Garance Marillier as Justine, is spell-binding. Right from her timid body-language in the beginning to her transformation into a cannibal, is simply incredible. The actress plays this difficult role with unbelievable conviction. Its an outstanding performance, that arrests your attention completely. Ella Rumpf as Alexia, Justine's sister, is another performer to watch. She's excellent!
On the whole, 'Raw' is among the big winners of recent times. Its brave, graphic & undeniably original. Don't Miss It! But I strongly suggest you watch it with an empty stomach. Don't tell me later I didn't warn you.
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