March 22, 2023
'Infinity Pool': Brandon Cronenberg Takes Us On An Incredibly Horrifying Vacation

‘Infinity Pool’: Brandon Cronenberg Takes Us On An Incredibly Horrifying Vacation

Sequel to his 2020 film Possessorthe new film by Canadian filmmaker Brandon Cronenberg Overflowing swimming poolstarring Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth, takes us on an incredibly gruesome, violent and hedonistic vacation.

Novelist James (Skarsgård) attempts to combat writer’s block by traveling to an opulent, all-inclusive resort in Li Tolqa’s fictional country with his wife Em (Cleopatra Coleman). During this vacation, they meet another couple, Gabi (Goth) and Al (Jalil Lespert), who have been to this affluent resort before, and end up convincing James and Em to break the only rule of ownership, customers. can’t get past The gates.

After spending the day barbecuing on the beach, James punches a local man as he returns to the resort, killing him instantly. Gabi insists that the best thing to do, given Li Tolqa’s policing practices, is to just go back to the compound and pretend nothing happened.

But crime catches up with them, and James and Em are both brought to the police station.

In Li Tolqa, the consequence of this crime is death, but wealthy tourists can consider another option. You can pay to create a clone, an exact replica of a person’s body that also retains all of their memories, and that clone can be executed instead. The rule is that Em and James will also be forced to watch the execution of the clone.

James quickly discovers that these new friends he made at the station have been involved in this for years, treating Li Tolqa as their playground to do as they please and avoid the traditional consequences.

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth in Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool (Neon/Elevation Pictures)

No consequences for the rich

For Cronenberg, the idea for this movie started out as a short story, just based on the execution scene where James first watches himself die.

“It really happened in a scene where someone was watching a double of themselves being executed, but the double has the memories of the crime and feels guilty, and so it was more about identity and of punishment,” Cronenberg said. Yahoo Canada. “The station stuff came later when I developed it into a feature because it seemed like a good framework to talk about people operating without conventional consequences.”

While it is tempting to put Overflowing swimming pool in the same box as shows like The Lotus While, or other movies like triangle of sadness and The menuCronenberg very seductively connects this satire of the elite with the concept of how one’s psychology can, as Cronenberg describes it, “go out of shape” in an inconsequential society.

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth in Brandon Cronenberg's Infinity Pool (Neon/Elevation Pictures)

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth in Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool (Neon/Elevation Pictures)

“Sci-fi as designed by Apple, a super slick thing has been done to such an extreme”

When you think of cloning, the first thing that probably comes to mind is a very sterile, futuristic, minimalist space, but that’s not the case in Overflowing swimming pool. Instead, the film balances this shiny, bright seaside resort with this very rustic, almost decaying setting where the cloning and execution happens.

“It had to be as textured and menacing as the station was superficial,” Cronenberg explained. “Part of it was just picking locations. We shot in Hungary and Croatia, and so there’s this story in those places that is the real communist story.”

Part of the film, for example, was shot in a power plant built during the communist era.

“Perhaps because science fiction as it is conceived by Apple, super clever things have been done to such an extreme with shows like black mirror, that while it probably represents an exact version of the future, I feel like we stopped responding to it at some point because it just becomes a convention,” Cronenberg said.

“So for that reason, but also because of the setting and the narrative, I wanted to do something more ramshackle.”

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth at the Infinity Pool screening with cast in New York, NY, USA on January 23, 2023. Photo by Dave Allocca/StarPix/Startraks/ABACAPRESS.COM

Alexander Skarsgård and Mia Goth at the Infinity Pool screening with cast in New York, NY, USA on January 23, 2023. Photo by Dave Allocca/StarPix/Startraks/ABACAPRESS.COM

“What I really want from an actor is someone who surprises me”

Apart from the appealing visuals, the cast of Overflowing swimming pool is, if we may be so bold to say, perfection. But Cronenberg acknowledges that to get these complex and exciting moments on screen, with this level of intensity, he needed the actors to pull it off.

“Certainly the most important part is just finding the right actors to start with,” Cronenberg said. “There are actors who I think are immediately brilliant and exciting.”

“I really want to target actors like that and bring them into my characters, and give them some freedom to explore. Because by the time I’m making the movie, the characters in my script kind of fell asleep on me I’ve been with them way too long and they’ve gotten boring, and they’re in a rut, so what I really want in an actor is someone who’s going to surprise me and breathe this new life into him.

The filmmaker added that while he tries to think about editing while he’s directing, he also makes a point of “deviating” from an actor’s process.

“I don’t really squeeze much when I shoot,” Cronenberg said. “I like to give them some space.”

“Then in the edit, I get very particular again, because I think you can really change the performance in the edit. You can really either support an actor’s great work…or you can really ruin a performance.”

Alexander Skarsgård in Brandon Cronenberg's Infinity Pool (Neon/Elevation Pictures)

Alexander Skarsgård in Brandon Cronenberg’s Infinity Pool (Neon/Elevation Pictures)

When it comes to Alexander Skarsgård’s portrayal of James, Cronenberg really tapped into the actor’s versatility.

“He’s got that presence and that charisma that allows him to play those leading man roles, and he’s been in bigger studio movies,” Cronenberg said. “But he’s also a lot more interesting than that, and he really has to embrace this kind of subversive stuff and work against expectations, and he has the ability to do that.”

“So to have someone who could start the movie off like it was straight out of a resort brochure, but who not only understood the nuance of the drama, but eventually twisted into this cannibalistic character, was rare and wonderful. “

Mia Goth, after her dynamic performance in Ti West’s pearlquickly becomes the queen of horror with these particularly touching and frankly frightening characters.

“Mia is someone I’ve wanted to work with for many years, because ever since I first saw her in Nymphomaniac, and every movie after that, she’s always uniquely amazing,” Cronenberg said. “She steals every scene, she always has that amazing quality going for her.”

With all the talk of the “Nepo Baby” phenomenon, it should be mentioned that the filmmaker’s father, David Cronenberg, is a sci-fi and horror legend. But Overflowing swimming pool shows that not only is his son equally talented, but he has such a seductive, catchy, almost obsessive point of view as a filmmaker himself.

If you are a fan of a scare and a thrill, Overflowing swimming pool turns out to be one of the best.

Infinity Pool opens in theaters on January 27

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