Just minutes ago, I watched a film called “We are the Flesh (Tenemos la Carne)” A Mexican film released in 2016 that garnered some buzz around the internet horror community. I’ll be brief: I absolutely hate this movie on a molecular level, and there is no way that I, in good conscience, can let any of you sit through this movie without at very least a warning. I’m going to run through this movie shot-by-shot in hopes that this will:
A. Keep you from making the same mistakes I did, and
B. Salvage in some small way 120 minutes of my life I’ll never get back. If, for some reason, you liked this film- this post is not for you, and before you comment or tweet to me “this is an art house movie, you just don’t like art house movies !”
The opening – gasoline bread soup into a one man drum solo.
This film opens to the sounds of a old man breathing heavy…hope you like people breathing heavy, cuz oh boy is there a lot of that in this movie. As the lights go up (barely. This is a very dark movie; both in subject matter and in the Alien vs Predator vs Underworld cinematography sorta way) we see this breathing old man mashing up what looks like bread in a big plastic tub; then dumping water (gasoline?) on it, before taping up the plastic tub and lighting some fires on it, or around it, making some sorta makeshift still, I guess? Then we cut to the man (we’re going to call him Charlie from this point on, because he resembles a Latin version of Charlies Manson) sitting in room, banging on a drum violently. We then cut back to the bread gas soup bowl, Charlie is there too-no one moves in this movie, they just materialize from scene to scene. Anyway, reunited with his soup, he takes the lid off and we see the bread soup has become bread mash. We know Charlie is excited, because he jams his gross hands into the mash with a near- orgasmic look on his face. I feel like I left out quick cuts of Charlie sleeping in a makeshift sleeping bag, as he doses himself with something out of an eyedropper. He also pulled a bunch of eggs from under a wall. All of this is taking place inside of a very run-down building; something right of of a Nine Inch Nails video from the 90s . Then we cut back to bread mash bowl. Some water (gas?) falls from a hose that’s dangling from the ceiling; he smiles, lights it on fire on the floor, and says “GAS.”
Boom into title card! Yup, that is your introduction into the the world that is this movie.
Strap in, it’s a bumpy ride.
The rising action – Dude bang your sister, she’s pretty hot.
The next two additions to our menagerie are a brother and sister pair who climb into the building through some floorboards only, to find Charlie passed out. I guess too much drumming and bread mashin’ will tucker out even the strongest man. So, upon finding this snoozing old weirdo whom you can assume owns this building; or at very least lives there and would view them as trespassers, they proceed to do what a normal person in their situation would do: they drag him across the floor and jump on him to try and wake him up. He doesn’t wake up, and the movie cuts to the brother and sister sleeping. Charlie is standing over them…let that sink in for a second; you just broke into someone’s home, then, because, I dunno, you’re a goddamn loon- you decide to try and wake up that certain someone, but in the process of waking them up, you fall asleep.
Now that Charlie is looming over brother and sister, he tells the kids that they can stay with him; all this is said as Charlie feeds them cold scrambled eggs that looked like, and after watching the movie possibly is, cum. Anyway, he locks brother and sister in a room with a chained door- don’t worry this chained room angle is literally used for A scene and never comes back. Then the movie cuts to brother and sister and Charlie using masking tape to make some kinda giant fort made out of cardboard. I should point out that brother and sister are not in their street clothes, but rather in Patrick Bateman-esque-full-body-semi-clear plastic rain coats, and that’s all they’re wearing . Charlie is rambling some weird nonsense about how he fucked his mom, or Earth, or sister, or who knows what the hell; sister passively flirts with Charlie. A few moments later Charlie is with brother and asks what a “skeleton like you doing with such a hot chick ?” To which Brother answers, “she’s my sister.” This seems to really turn Charlie’s crank, and he says “that doesn’t mean you still don’t wanna fuck her” because gross and this movie is gross. I think at this point we cut to more fort building. Sister now has some kinda signal that she’s down with Charlie, because now when they look at each other they both touch their fingers to their tongue. Then of course another cut- because why not why transition to a scene when you can just cut ? Why have chicken when ya got steak ?
TJ did you say steak ? I sure did ! Good segue! The next scene is another eating scene. Charlie who previously had pulled eggs from from under a wall now has pulled out two juicy streaks! How did he get those steaks? Who gave them to him? Trust that you will NEVER know that answer. Anyway- as brother,sister, and Charlie are eating, sister says brother won’t eat meat. This upsets Charlie and as he starts talking about how the Nazis created a poison from almonds. While he’s giving this crash course on the holocaust, sister starts foaming at the mouth and convulsing on the floor. Charlie says he can cure sister but brother has to eat his steak. At this point, the movie has close up shots of brother eating; because of course it does,and shitty jump cuts and still frames of sister foaming at the mouth. Charlie stays true to his word and cures her. Now, if up to this point you thought this movie was kinda weird but not that weird, well this is where the rubber meets the road.
The saggy middle – sing me a song as you jerk off into oblivion
We cut to what now looks like a completed cardboard fort and find sister and Charlie hanging out. Sister really doesn’t seem upset at all over that attempted murder 30 seconds ago, but hey- it’s only attempted murder, right ? Sister gazes lovingly at Charlie as he rambles off more incoherent nonsense. Then, Charlie brings sister and brother together and demands they have sex; well to say he demanded it is kind of overstating it, he kinda raised his voice and said that if brother didn’t have sex with sister than he would …this is your last warning btw, from here on out it’s all killer, no filler. Ready?
So Charlie tells sister to give brother a blow job- and just so we, the audience, knows what it means when a woman’s head is moving back and forth on naked penis- the movie cuts to a legit fucking blow job scene right out of a porn, dick in her mouth and all. Cool, glad you cleared that up for me, movie. I was kinda lost. This leads to brother and sister moving to what I guess is a more romantic part of the cardboard fuck-dungeon and they have sex. In Predator vision. Because if you’re going to have what looks like full on sex in your movie, you better throw some kinda weird-ass filter on there, or people may start jacking off to your art! Wait, TJ? Did you say j-j-j- jacking off ? I did, other weird narrator TJ! Great segue again, because as this brother and sister sweat swap is going down, Charlie is singing a love song and jerking off. He’s actually jerking off, and don’t worry because I’m sure you’re all worried if you’d see Charlie cum. I mean we’ve all seen people jerk it in movies, but only true art has people do it to completion ( Larry Clark, I’m making fun of you. Please don’t send me a thank you on the back of a photograph of naked children.) So Charlie cums, and then as quickly as he came ha, he died .
The aftermath – my sister is all horned up. Great.
Charlie is dead, brother and sister drag his body into a empty room, and that’s the movie right? Nope, of course not; and believe it or not, all of this so far and we’re only about 45 mins into the movie! We cut to sister looking angry and alone in a black pool of something, then we see brother sitting in a chair looking sad, as you would after banging your sister. Thus enters sister, crawling on all fours, covered in oil or gas or whatever as she tries to mount her brother, Again.
Hey, I’m not made of stone- if you just look at this from a visual standpoint and divorce yourself from the “story” this is a pretty sexy situation. The actress that played sister (María Evoli) is very attractive, but here again it’s buried under all of this yuck . The next 15 minutes or so are made up of sequences where sister wants brother to fuck her, but he won’t, but he thinks about them fucking and he jerks off (don’t worry they show him jerking off ) at one point because, you know, why not? There’s a moment where sister drips menstrual blood into brother’s mouth, like we were all waiting for. Finally all this comes to a head as sister goes to Charlie’s corpse and fucks that. Post fucking, we cut to a little girl praying ( ¯\_(ツ)_/¯) then close up, and I mean close-up medical journal style shots of penis and vagina …educational, right? I mean the movie had so much restraint up to this point, why go crazy now ?
Fin – we’re all rape vampires in the real world.
So after the penis/vagina blow ups, we cut to the room where Charlie’s body was. It’s not there anymore, and sister seems upset about this. Then we cut to a very black room; I assume this is part of the cardboard fort, and we see the outline of a figure breaking through some kinda wet membrane. Think Freddie Kruger pushing through the wall. We then realize the figure is none other than Charlie, shaved and covered in slime. A sequence that won best metaphor for birth at the annual WE FUCKING GET IT awards, 2016. Brother and sister are super excited to have Charlie back, and even say that they are going to keep this family together… I know, I know. We’re almost done.
Cut to Charlie, sister, and, brother coming back to fort love slop with a screaming prisoner in tow. Brother is clearly very injured, as he has a literal hole in his head that Charlie jams shit into. Sister and Charlie tell their screaming captive that they’re going to kill him for his blood, his flesh, and all the precious juices in him. Oh cool, as long as you have a reason. Anyway, before they murder this dude, the three of them sing a song. Then they slice his throat and feed the blood to brother … so they’re vampires now, question mark. Sometime after this (and a ton of shots of dark caves with hole openings, in case you forgot all the subtle vaginal imagery) Charlie blurts out something about how now he’s going to live in brother and sister’s bodies and come out of mother Mary’s vagina, and he wants them to eat him, or, I don’t know; who could ever care. Then more cuts to sister luring people into their fuck lair, and then she and brother rapes them all the while she’s withing on the floor shrieking, because art. Finally, the movie cuts to a guy that looks like Spanish Harry Dean Stanton, out of fucking nowhere, and we see that now there are tons of people in the fuck lair all making fuck-people whom we’ve never seen, by the way . Charlie is in the corner dancing with some little girl (nothing sexual thank God, but who let a child on this set ?) and as the party comes to a close, we see Charlie’s decapitated head smiling away…whew …wait, it’s not over ? C’mon . We cut back to brother who now for some reason looks like Napoleon Dynamite walking out of the fuck lair, on to- get this- a normal busy street. What? They were just in the regular world the whole time?
The Regular-Ass World.