Honestly, I could easily say that I really have never been the kind of movie buff who liked, enjoyed, or at least, appreciated gory films. I have always been the type to end up becoming so squeamish in the presence of too much blood. I, however, am a big fan of horror films. I would say that it might honestly be my favorite film genre. You could just imagine how much excitement I felt when I found out that we were watching Raw, a 2016 French-belgian horror and drama film by Julia Ducournau. I watched the film without any idea of what’s going to happen—no research done beforehand, no knowledge on what the plot was about, and no preparation for the cannibalism that was about to be shown on screen. Just in the beginning of the film, the circumstances were already showing signs of what this film was going to be about: a vegetarian teenager who aspired to become a veterinarian. Soon enough, due to the school’s hazing rituals, you see her drenched in blood, initially, even expressing disgust and aversion to eating a rabbit kidney. Let us just say that every thing spiraled downwards from here.
A story that generally revolves around a coming-of-age story between two sisters, the concept of “learning the ropes” was shown through the horrific changes that Justine went through in her process of exploration and adventure, in her journey of finding her identity as she entered young adulthood, presented through carnage and sexuality. I still remember the initial twisting in my stomach as I watched Justine chomp down greedily on her sister, Alexia’s finger as she laid meters away from her, unconscious and having absolutely no idea of what kind of mess was happening in the room. For some odd reason, I found myself in so many strange fits of giggles—the same case goes with any other gory and horror film that I watch—the absurdity of the situation moved me to laughter that I couldn’t even explain myself. It was quite the experience, honestly, and from an objective standpoint, I would say with full confidence that Raw is indeed, one of the best horror films I have ever seen in a long time. The characters were complex and fascinating in their own little ways as well, and I was looking forward to seeing the development and progress between the relationship of the two sisters who were navigating their way through life.
The ending sequence was also absolutely brilliant in my opinion. I still, however, have a few questions in mind after the film came to a close. So, is this whole thing genetic? What exactly causes this weird phenomenon and practice that was actually shared by the line of women in the family? All I know now is that Raw was quite the viewing experience: carnal yet classy and intimate in its own special, grotesque way. And dear God, would I ever get that image of the waxing gone wrong scene out of my head?