The Heart is Deceitful Above All Things

Year: 2004
Production Co: Above All Things Inc
Director: Aria Argento
Writer: Aria Argento/Allesandro Magania
Cast: Aria Argento, Peter Fonda, John Robinson
This one requires a big commitment, it's one of those film's you have to go forward to meet, not one that comes to you easily. Is it worth it? For taboo-breaking bravery maybe, for storytelling or entertainment, hardly.

It depicts only the bottom feeding rungs of society, where people have feel disinterest - even contempt - for human life to the extent that you feel awful just sharing the Earth with them.

For an Italian film industry princess, Argento - who wrote and directed it as well as starred - does a good job of transforming herself into the white trash American underclass.

A young boy is taken away from his nice life with foster parents when his drug addict prostitute mother (Argento) shows up to collect him, making his life a nightmare as he's dragged from mobile home to truck stop in the middle of the night while she turns tricks, sexually abused and left for days on end - none of the stuff you see in a Hollywood film but which is the true bedrock of society.

And none of the other people he finds his way to are much better, including his mother's fearsomely strict Christian family that co-opts him into their narrow dogmatic code.

In the end, the film has no resolution and seems only to say that every boy gravitates towards a mother no matter how unworthy of the title she is, and that children can survive through a lot of what we think will destroy them. A catalogue of evils and misery - avoid it if you've had a rotten week. Interestingly, it shares production people as well as cast with Gus Van Sant's Elephant.

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