Piaffe (2023)

Piaffe (2023)

A sublime mix of experimental and sensual storytelling that will change the way you look at horses forever

7.0

Movie

Germany
German
Thriller
2023
ANN OREN, FEMALE DIRECTOR
Bjørn Melhus, Josef Ostendorf, Lea Draeger
86 min

TLDR

Horsing around doesn't even begin to cover it.

What it's about

After her sister falls ill, Eva steps in for her to foley the sound for a commercial featuring a horse; next thing she knows, her body starts changing too.

The take

Visual artist Ann Oren's first foray into feature-length filmmaking is a sensual delight and a gift that keeps on giving. Oren approaches her film with sincere dedication to every single building block: Piaffe looks, sounds, and feels sensational while being a fairly modest production. A true indie film, Piaffe verges on experimentation as a young woman named Eva (Simone Bucio) takes over the job of a foley artist from her sister. Even though she's under-qualified, she tries her best t0 come up with the sounds for a horse-themed commercial to no avail. However, in the process, she notices a bump on her lower back that grows into a horse's tail. Piaffe is a tale of metamorphosis, not only of the flesh, but also of the heart, as the themes it explores are also directly related to sexuality, submission, and, of course, love as a manifestation of all those things.

What stands out

If there is a carnal cinema canon, Piaffe would be its latest addition. Not only is the film brave enough to show bodies in flux, a cross-species contamination between human, animal, and flora, but it also captures the flow of energies between them. A tribute to processes, both internal and external, it feels embodied. Shot on Super 16mm, Piaffe has a texture you want to brush against and the mere act of looking here turns into touch. The film offers a truly synaesthetic experience when eroticism comes into play: we see Eva discovering her tail, her ambivalence and fondness growing in parallel. Later, there is a largely silent scene where she meets a man who places a red rose in her mouth with the tenderness reserved for all consensual kink practices – it is truly one of the most arousing, but minimalistic sequences in contemporary European cinema, to say the least.

Comments

Add a comment

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

UP NEXT 

Victoria (2015)

Filmed in one continuous take and in real time on the streets of Berlin, ‘Victoria’ immerses the viewer in a heart-stopping drama

9.8

Pearl (2022)

The technicolor slasher follow-up to Ti West's X is all about female rage and love for the movies

8.1

The Lives of Others (2006)

The 2006 winner of seven German Film Awards wowed viewers worldwide with an authentic look at East Germany's sinister secret police Stasi

6.9

Full Time (2021)

A gripping thriller about the Herculean task that is keeping a job

8.7

The Pig, the Snake and the Pigeon (2023)

A dying criminal kills to be the most wanted in this Taiwanese Western-esque gangster drama

7.5

My Name Is Loh Kiwan (2024)

Love enables survival in this moving drama about the refugee experience

7.0

The Trial of the Chicago 7 (2020)

A star-studded and riveting legal drama with a blockbuster feel.

8.1

The Guilty (2018)

A minimalist, razor-sharp thriller that will have you gasping for air.

9.0

The Zone of Interest (2023)

A chilling and masterful display of the banality of evil

9.5

Leave the World Behind (2023)

Shyamalan meets Black Mirror in this hugely entertaining, visually inventive apocalyptic thriller with a killer ending

8.2

Curated by humans, not algorithms.

agmtw logo

© 2024 agoodmovietowatch, all rights reserved.