“Infinity Pool” Review

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“Infinity Pool” Rating: 3/5

Brandon Cronenberg is back with another controversial thriller. Seems he is following in his father’s footsteps.

“Infinity Pool” explores the life of James Foster, a writer who can’t seem to find success. He and his wife travel to an exclusive resort to find inspiration for his next novel. They meet Gabi, a mysterious but alluring young woman who entices James to join her in an exploration outside of resort confines. When a terrible accident ensues, James is exposed to a nightmarish subculture that could have dire consequences for everyone involved.

Positives

“Infinity Pool’s” greatest attribute is the mesmerizing ambiance throughout the film. There is a certain artistic flare that utilizes sharp color contrasts with the hypnotic tone. This mirrors Cronenberg’s previous film, “Possessor.”

Mystery surrounds every aspect of the story. I was impressed at the constant jolt of expectations as many of the plot expectations are subverted. Many of these directions weave interesting commentary throughout the story as it builds to the conclusion.

Cronenberg doesn’t spoon-feed the audience with themes, but rather challenges us to observe the horrible culture the main characters lavish in. While watching I couldn’t believe how disgusted I was with some of their actions. To my surprise, the weirdness and sadistic culture got worse and worse. I believe that’s the takeaway, where the actions of those with fortune hurt those around them.

By the film’s conclusion, each character was irredeemable. Such a heinous story couldn’t be crafted without the committed performances of the cast. Their immersion into the roles were both intense and horrifying. Does this make for the most pleasant experience? Not by a long shot. It certainly left me thinking long after the credits rolled.

Negatives

While I enjoyed “Infinity Pool’s” ability to elicit strong feelings, it doesn’t piece together its’ ideas enough for a recommendation to most audiences.

There is enough brutal violence and explicit sexual content to warrant a shower after watching. I could see viewers who weren’t prepared for such intense elements to hate the film. Cronenberg probably wants us to feel this way.

The grotesque sequences he creates are purposefully horrific to convey the ideas explored. Some might find it hard to separate the ideas from the nastiness. I admit there were times I felt extremely uncomfortable, hoping the plot would center around the ideas rather than the graphic elements. Alas, it’s Cronenberg…what should we expect?

“Possessor” seemed to convey the themes in a more interesting way, which makes me wish “Infinity Pool” could be on that level.

Conclusion

“Infinity Pool” manages to create a hypnotic story that entices the viewer to join on this terrifying journey. However, the film bites off more than it can chew, focusing on violence and sexual content more than a rude awakening of thematic exposition.

Check it out if weird, ultra-niche horror films pique your interest. I’d advise audiences who are squeamish to sit this one out.

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