Pig, an intense simmering fire, is a beautiful meditation on the true meaning of loss, filled with vignettes drenched in humor, pathos and violence.

Revenge dramas are usually triggered by a sense of sudden loss, which becomes the basis for a lonely figure to take on the world at large. Whether it’s John Wick’s fickle rage that ignited after losing his beloved bitch, Daisy, or a frenzied Bryan Mills hell-bent on saving his daughter in Taken, Revenge dramas often meet a set of expectations set from a narrative point of view. However, this is not the case with Michael Sarnoski. Pig, which unfolds in a way uncharacteristic of a revenge thriller, but manages to make every aspect work while defying the expectations of the genre. An intense slow combustion, Pig is a beautiful meditation on the true meaning of loss, filled with vignettes drenched in humor, pathos, and violence.

Pig It begins with the lush greenery of the Oregon forests, home to a lonely, bearded man named Rob (Nicholas Cage), whose only companion is a truffle-hunting pig. Rob spends his days in his secluded cabin, training his pig to hunt for valuable mushrooms, which he sells to an unnecessarily optimistic young man named Amir (Alex Wolff). Clues to Rob’s past are tentatively dropped through numerous visual cues, such as the way he carefully folds the dough for the rustic mushroom tart he makes for himself and his beloved animal, immersing himself in the heavenly scent of the ingredients. frescoes used. This domestic bliss is soon interrupted when a group of invisible figures steal Rob’s pig in the dead of night, which is a common sight in the underbelly of the culinary world. Emotionally devastated, Rob turns to Amir to take him to Portland in an effort to track down his precious partner.

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Rob (Nicholas Cage) and Amir (Alex Wolff) in Pig

What follows is a series of unpredictable events, involving a secret passageway in a restaurant, an underground fight club, a shocking revelation, and a glitzy conversation in a pretentious Michelin restaurant. Rob’s true identity is gradually revealed, and it soon becomes clear that the name Robert Felt means a lot in the culinary industry, to the point of evoking gratitude, wonder, and fear. It is interesting to note that Pig It is not an ordinary revenge thriller, as it lingers in moments that are pregnant with pathos, riddled with observations about existence that weigh heavily on the characters involved.

In one particularly riveting scene, where Amir serves Rob French toast and deconstructed chives for breakfast, the latter plunges into the futility of a transactional existence, which can be erased in an instant by a natural calamity. The extent to which humans conspire, bargain, rush, and often betray each other to get certain things in life seems extreme, even cruel, in the face of the things that really matter. One of the greatest strengths of Pig it’s Sarnoski’s way of rationing revelations about his key characters. These revelations are never too direct, nor are they treated in a way that feels staged or inorganic; Interestingly, an air of mystery still surrounds Rob until the final shot, which is not an easy feat to master.

Rob (Nicholas Cage) in Pig

The formidable restaurant product broker Darius, played with fierce resolve by Adam Arkin, emerges as a key obstacle between Rob and his animal, which can only be conquered by the power of food. The rich delicacy of working with textured aromas, the act of breaking bread together and the gesture of preparing a plate for someone, can be considered a language of love lost in today’s transactional culture, whose value is highlighted by Pig in dark and beautiful ways.

Despite being an emotional roller coaster, Pig It never feels bloated as it manages to stay grounded during its run time. This is made possible by Cage’s incredible performance as Rob, a man who refuses to be treated medically despite being covered in his own blood, speaking in measured whispers as his eyes glow with deadly intensity. Wolff is also impressive as the wonderfully dynamic Amir, who strikes up loving company with a man who has experienced inconsolable loss. While not all questions are answered, such as the exact reason why Rob chose to ditch his previous life and go off the grid, or what happened to the woman whose cassette tapes were still at home, Pig it is an emotionally rewarding experience like no other.

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Pig It will be shown in US theaters beginning July 16, 2021, courtesy of Neon. The film is 92 minutes long and is rated R for language and some violence.

Our rating:

4.5 of 5 (essential)

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