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The Wild Boys
Institute of Contemporary Arts

The Wild Boys (Les garçons sauvages), Dir. Bertrand Mandico, France 2017, 110 min., French with English subtitles

This intoxicating, gender-bending adventure, shot in black and white with richly saturated colour effects, is modelled after William S. Burroughs apocalyptic novel from the early 1970s. Fantasy, eroticism, violence and mystery engulf a group of young, privileged teenage boys, cast away from the island of La Réunion for committing a sadistic crime. The boys, all played by women, are ferried to sea by a Dutch Captain, charged with reforming their savage ways. They soon stage a rebellion and are released from the captain’s grip after a shipwreck and into the wilds of a supernatural island. There, among the mutant vegetation and phallic fruits, the wild boys act upon their abject sexual desires and undergo a mystical transformation.

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