Kissed (1996) from Johnny Web (Uncle Scoopy; Greg Wroblewski)
I think I can say without any hesitation that Kissed
is the Citizen Kane of corpse-fuckin' films. Not only that, but it
is the only necrophilia film I can name in which the corpses are
male! I guess it is fitting that it comes from Canada because it is
a very cold country where they need corpses as a source of relative
warmth. Think of huskies burying themselves in the freezing snow to
escape the even more freezing winds. Based on one of many odd short
stories in "We So Seldom Look On Love" by Canadian author Barbara
Gowdy, Kissed treats a woman's necrophilia not only as an obsession,
but as sheer lyric poetry, and as transcendence, perhaps the only
way a live person can experience the sheer bliss of "crossing over."
The lead character says, "It's like looking into the sun without
going blind. I'm consumed."
If you haven't already figured it out, this is not an exploitation movie about fucking corpses, but an art movie about loving them romantically.
The film begins in first person narration as Sandra Larson looks back on her childhood and says, "I've always been fascinated by death. The feel of it, the smell of it, the quietness of it," and the flashbacks begin. When other girls are first sticking their tongues in boys' mouths, Sandra is first sticking her tongue into the vital organs of dead birds. When other girls are masturbating to posters of rock stars, Sandra masturbates by rubbing dead animals on her thighs. When she is finished with the dead critters, she buries them, then strips down and does the traditional ceremonial death dance in their honor. I'm not sure that "dance" is the right word, since there is no music and the ritual basically just consists of spinning around in circles while wearing underpants, but that's the word the author used, and I just couldn't come up with a better one.
At any rate, I think you now have the idea. If not, let's just say this girl loves death so much that she makes Jim Morrison seem as life-embracing as Zorba the Greek.
Say, boys and girls, can you guess where she chooses to work when she grows up? I knew that you could. Can you guess what she does with the bodies? If you can't, give further consideration to the word "stiff." Of course, before she actually climbs onboard, or perhaps the two word version "on board" would be more appropriate here, she once again performs the ceremonial underpants dance. Childhood habits are difficult to break.
The dramatic tension in the film comes when a medical student falls in love with her, then figures out all her secrets. He's not scared or repulsed by her necrophilia, but since corpse-fuckin' is the only thing that turns her on, he is very confused about how he can become a sexual partner capable of gratifying her.
He figures it out.
You will probably be surprised to hear that this obscure film, which originally appeared on eight screens, has now attracted 47 comments and nearly a thousand votes at IMDb. You may also be surprised to hear that 80% of the voters have scored it a six or higher, and that there are very few scores at the minimal level. Many people felt it was an excellent effort, and even the mainstream middlebrow reviewers generally gave it a good reception. (Roger Ebert awarded it three stars.) These reactions mean that (1) the film is handled as tastefully and artistically as possible (2) the film is rarely seen by anyone likely to be repulsed by the subject matter. The creators of Kissed make no secret of the fact that it is about necrophilia, so the people who seek it out and watch it are probably likely to approach it with an open mind.
For what it's worth, I have to admit that my own mind appears to be more closed than I had thought, or at least more closed than the minds of the reviewers and IMDb commenters who praised this movie. I found that the subject matter was so unpleasant and so ... well ... morbid ... that I couldn't relate to the film in any way, and just couldn't get anything from the experience of watching it. On the other hand, that reaction simply reflects my own interests and prejudices, and is not really a commentary on the quality of the film itself.
In addition to my problems with the subject matter, I found the lofty whispered lyrical narration unrelentingly pretentious, like the poetry of a pre-teen girl trying to describe a world beyond her own mundane life. The following sample quotes from the book will give you the idea, although not all these lines are in the movie:
Isn't it necromantic?
Your reaction to the above quotes should give you a very clear snapshot of your response to the film. If you like that kind of pseudo-poetic approach and if you have an open mind about the subject matter, you may be impressed by the skill and maturity with which the film approaches the topic.
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