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We Are What We Are [Blu-ray]
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The Parkers have always kept to themselves, and for good reason. Behind closed doors, patriarch Frank rules his family with a rigorous fervor, determined to keep his ancestral customs intact at any cost. As a torrential rainstorm moves into the area, tragedy strikes and his daughters Iris and Rose are forced to assume responsibilities that extend beyond those of a typical family. As the unrelenting downpour continues to flood their small town, the local authorities begin to uncover clues that bring them closer to the secret that the Parkers have held closely for so many years.
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Top Customer Reviews
This is not a formulaic Hollywood horror flick. It's a haunting and horrifying drama with beautiful cinematography, about a family whose colonial ancestors were driven to Donner party extremes by the harsh winters of a not-so abundant New World. The human mind finds clever ways to let the survivors of such a traumatic ordeal live with what they've done. Justifying it as the will of God, and finding scriptural basis for 'transubstantiating' the act of cannibalism from atrocity to sacred ritual, is actually quite believable. Catholics and Protestants have killed one another over...Read more ›
then this thing hit you, especially the most bizarre and “Shocking ending you will ever, ever See,
This is the Re-make of the Spanish speaking movie out of Mexico, “We Are What We Are” is a movie you
will soon not forget, if you decide and has the stomach to endure it’s outcome, weak stomach, stay away,
the way Director “Jim Mickle shot this, is nothing more than outstanding, the rainy atmosphere that we see
from the very fist opening scene of the movie, when Mrs. Parker, head into town to get supplies for the family,
from there on this movie takes on a slow ride, like you don’t know what’s going to happen, everything was
going through my mind, trying very hard to figure out it’s outcome, from the four main characters of the movie,
or I should say five, which includes the doctor, played be Michael Parks” I remember him from, (“From Dusk Till Dawn”
the very first scene in the corner store") played their part to an absolute perfection, Bill Sage” Ambyr Childers” and
Julia Garner” plus little Nick Damici” hope they had a green screen so that kid couldn’t see that one scene of mayhem,
if you think Hannibal Lector was gross, this one overshadow that by a mile, may not be in story wise but Oh Boy,
but the ever, ever, ever, unrecognizable “Kelly McGillis” not until the end credits did I know it was her, see if you can,
she was also in “Stake Land” and I didn’t know it, till the end, I warn you again, weak stomach stay away,
English 5.1 DTS-HD master Audio.
Runtime 105 Min.
This Dinner Will Leave A Very Bad Taste In Your MOUTH....
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Less than a minute into Jim Mickle's reimagining—one cannot call it a remake with a straight face—of Jorge Grau's fine 2010 film Somos lo que Hay, he has already made it plain to the viewer who has seen the previous film that We Are What We Are is a different movie indeed. The two movies start with the same event; the death of the head of a family. While that death is never explained in the 2010 film (the family gets a visit from the coroner about two-thirds of the way through this version with a cause of death, not that it matters), the two of them are virtually identical in the method in which each family member dies; it starts with a nosebleed, descends quickly into convulsions, and within seconds that person has shuffled off this mortal coil. It is the circumstances surrounding the two deaths that make all the difference. When Papa does in the 2010 film, he is in a large city. He is surrounded by people, yet he is utterly alone and anonymous. (One of the movie's finest, funniest, blackest scenes is the revelation of what happens to him after his death, which takes place in the following minute or so.) In the 2013 film, Emma Parker (Evil Dead II's Kassie DePaiva) is trying to beat a coming storm in a small backwoods town somewhere in Appalachia, frantically grabbing groceries, but still managing to have time to have a conversation with the clerk at the general store. (Yes, this town is small enough to still have a general store.) In the space of a couple of minutes, Jim Mickle has changed the sex of the dying parent and the type of city in which the family lives. This should be creating a string of “what if?”s in the head of any viewer who has seen the original movie. It is to Jim Mickle (Mulberry St.)'s credit that instead of doing this and then trying to shoehorn the rest of the movie into remake territory, he gives us, essentially, an entirely new film based on those “what if?”s. And it is a good one indeed, Jim Mickle's best film to date.
After Emma's death, her husband Frank (Mysterious Skin's Bill Sage), is distraught enough that his daughters, Iris (The Master's Ambyr Childers) and Rose (Martha Marcy May Marlene's Julia Garner), have to step up and take charge. Well, that's the way it looks at first, but here's where those amazing what-ifs start cascading; Emma and her family, it seems, are from a long line that stems from an entirely matriarchal culture, and so Frank is stuck playing second fiddle and, occasionally, enforcer. This is especially the case when the girls' younger brother Rory (Every Secret Thing's Jack Gore in his screen debut) starts to get close to Marge (Top Gun's Kelly McGillis), their nearest neighbor, and the friendship between the two threatens to expose the Parkers' long-held secrets.
Perhaps the biggest change to the original film is when those secrets are revealed. They become obvious in the original film not long after the two children (sons in that one) are forced to take over the family; here, they are held back longer, turned into a Big Reveal(TM). This could be because I've seen the original and am a fan of it, but I didn't think the skeletons in the family's closet were really as big a deal as that would lead one to think; in many ways, that seems to me the weakest link in this otherwise very good film. I hesitate to say that this is the best way to remake a movie, but it is certainly a far sight better than the vast majority of remakes that have been coming out of Hollywood for the past ten or so years. Imaginations ran wild when Mickle and longtime partner in crime Nick Damici were putting this script together, and most everything falls into place pretty nicely; those pieces that had to be forced or shimmed are minor, really, and We Are What We Are is a worthy descendant of the original film that manages to blaze its own trail successfully. *** ½
When Frank’s wife passes away, the responsibly of assisting him with killing the victims now falls to eldest daughter Iris. But she and Rose are hesitant, desiring only to be normal teenagers. As they prepare themselves for their ghoulish feast, the local doctor begins unraveling the clues that will reveal their cannibalistic legacy and lead him to discover what happened to his own daughter who went missing.
We Are What We Are is a slow moving film and despite its subject matter it is extremely light on blood and gore. The film was directed by Jim Mickle who directed the excellent 2010 vampire film “Stake Land”. Like that film, this one also relies heavily on characterization and atmosphere. To that end he employs much of the same cast and crew including actors Kelly McGillis and Nick Damici, Cinematographer Ryan Samul, and composer Jeff Grace. The film has the same somber and often gloomy tone as Stake Land. The killing and eating of the body isn’t done for gruesome effect but rather as a reluctant but respectful almost religious observance of a family tradition. Thus the film never becomes over the top. Might be too slow moving for some horror fans and runs a tad too long but all in all and interesting and very different type of horror film.
The Silence of the Lambs gave us an articulate, Euro-suave gourmand cannibal, but served up pretty much the same stew.
There's nothing formulaic about We Are What We Are, a brilliant, deeply disturbing religious allegory about an otherwise normal family in rural, upstate New York who subscribe to a generations-old belief that they will die if they don't consume human flesh.
Loosely adapted from Mexican director Jorge Michel Grau's stunning 2010 shocker, We Are What We Are is the third feature from indie wunderkind Jim Mickle, who breathed new life into the vampire genre with 2010's equally riveting, innovative Stake Land.
An American Gothic yarn about the power of tradition, ritual, and sacrifice to bind a clan together, We Are What We Are doesn't waste time with cheap scares. Mickle keeps his story on a steady, slow simmer, transporting us minute by minute into the very heart of dread.
Ambyr Childers (Tee Master) and Julia Garner (Martha Marcy May Marlene) give deeply moving performances as teenage sisters Iris and Rose Parker, who find themselves the heads of the family when their mother is accidentally killed in a violent storm.
Their father, Frank (Bill Sage), expects them to take up their mother's mantle and initiate their clan's generations-old ritual of preparing, sacrificing, and consuming another human being. Frank may be the enforcer who reminds the girls of the strictures of their strange covenant with the universe, but he's powerless to perform the ritualized killing himself: It's always been the matriarch's role.
Kill Bill's Michael Parks has a strong turn as Doc Barrow, who begins to investigate the family when his autopsy of the mother reveals a shocking secret.
Perhaps the most frightening aspect of Mickle's film is that it elicits sympathy for Iris and Rose's singularly melancholy family.
Shot in an area of New York state that still bears the scars of Hurricane Irene, and fortified by amazing sound design and an exquisite eye for visual rhyme and rhythm, We Are What We Are is suffused by an eerie, biblical atmosphere.
It evokes such terrifying scenes as Noah's Flood, Moses' sublime confrontation with God, and Abraham's sacrifice of Isaac, reminding us that the sacred can manifest itself as a voracious monster.
The makers here follow this rule conspicuously, until the final moments; then it's as if they can no longer help themselves.
This film is about what it's like to live inside a nightmare. It starts in bad weather. A woman dies. The local doctor misdiagnoses
her disease.The technical aspects carry us along inside the dream until there is a change in tone, a sort of misstep, which allows
us to wake up. Part of this has to do with what they have the local doctor, whose daughter has gone missing, say at the end.
Part of it has to do with what they have him do (or fail to do), falling back on formulaic methods. His characterization falls apart
Wisely, there are no dream sequences, which would undermine the dreaminess of the main narrative.
There is a flashback sequence which establishes "what we are" as historical. A family tradition from the 19th century. It seems
to disrupt the main narrative. Maybe it could have gone at the beginning, and been gotten over with. The girls could still read
to us from the book.
One should see this for its many good points. The remarkable acting by the young people. The tight storyline. Pared down scant dialogue. The washed out bloodless look to the thing. Haunting music. All-in-all a sort of minimalist masterpiece. But not without
One doesn't like to quibble, but I would have gone for the whole enchilada, by staying the course.
Not so young viewers will recognize Kelly McGillis of Witness fame as the neighbor woman, as well as Michael Parks as the