Listen to our full discussion of this precursor of the mumblecore wave on our new podcast series Mysterium Pictorum! Available on any podcasting app you like!
This film is on so many "Best Movies of All Time" lists - It was mind blowing for me to learn that it's barely a movie at all!
I think, having seen Joe Swanberg jerk off in the shower in his debut feature, I might be de-sensitized to the wonders of deliberately "bad because authentic" mumblecore shenanigans. It might well be that "Flesh" inspired all of those, but - Is that really such a great accomplishment?
Another thing that bugged me was a bit more specific. A while ago, I gave up reading "The long Way to a small, angry Planet". My problem with it was this: Obviously the author intended to show how a wide variety of real-world issues shouldn't be issues at all and thus presented evolved, futuristic societies in which there weren't. There shouldn't be conflict, so there wasn't.
I sympathize with the sentiment, I really do - But that is just terrible storytelling. I am so sorry, but that's just a fact.
"Flesh" seems to try a similar thing: None of the assumed shocking acts performed in the film should be problematic, in the minds of the creatives, so they aren't. Everyone is okay with everything. Everyone is bored - Including me.
I don't even think that's a good message regarding the content of this film.
I hate the fact that, lately, "Mysterium Pictorum" has become something like a hate-podcast. I sincerely hope that will change soon. "Flesh" did nothing to help me with that task.