Newest Reviews
Tyger Tyger
Filmmaker's House, The
Man Standing Next, The
Rock, Paper and Scissors
Batman: The Long Halloween Part One
Salaam Bombay!
Boss Level
My Heart Can't Beat Unless You Tell It To
Edge of the World
Treasure City
Shiva Baby
Flowers of Shanghai
War and Peace
Merrily We Go to Hell
Ellie & Abbie (& Ellie's Dead Aunt)
Amusement Park, The
Hands of Orlac, The
Death has Blue Eyes
Kala Azar
After Love
Earwig and the Witch
Zebra Girl
Skull: The Mask
Bank Job
Drunk Bus
Newest Articles
Sherlock vs Ripper: Murder by Decree on Blu-ray
That Ol' Black Magic: Encounter of the Spooky Kind on Blu-ray
She's Evil! She's Brilliant! Basic Instinct on Blu-ray
Hong Kong Dreamin': World of Wong Kar Wai on Blu-ray
Buckle Your Swash: The Devil-Ship Pirates on Blu-ray
Way of the Exploding Fist: One Armed Boxer on Blu-ray
A Lot of Growing Up to Do: Fast Times at Ridgemont High on Blu-ray
Oh My Godard: Masculin Feminin on Blu-ray
Let Us Play: Play for Today Volume 2 on Blu-ray
Before The Matrix, There was Johnny Mnemonic: on Digital
More Than Mad Science: Karloff at Columbia on Blu-ray
Indian Summer: The Darjeeling Limited on Blu-ray
3 from 1950s Hollyweird: Dr. T, Mankind and Plan 9
Meiko Kaji's Girl Gangs: Stray Cat Rock on Arrow
Having a Wild Weekend: Catch Us If You Can on Blu-ray
The Drifters: Star Lucie Bourdeu Interview
Meiko Kaji Behind Bars: Female Prisoner Scorpion on Arrow
The Horror of the Soviets: Viy on Blu-ray
Network Double Bills: Tarka the Otter and The Belstone Fox
Network Double Bills: All Night Long and Ballad in Blue
Chew Him Up and Spit Him Out: Romeo is Bleeding on Blu-ray
British Body Snatchers: They Came from Beyond Space on Blu-ray
Bzzzt: Pulse on Blu-ray
The Tombs Will Be Their Cities: Demons and Demons 2 on Arrow
Somebody Killed Her Husband: Charade on Blu-ray
  Gunda Some Pig
Year: 2020
Director: Viktor Kosakovskiy
Stars: None
Genre: DocumentaryBuy from Amazon
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Gunda is a pig, and she lives on a free-range farm where she has recently given birth to a litter of piglets. She allows them to suckle as she lies in contemplation of the world outside her barn, grunting contentedly as her offspring squeal and murmur while trying to find a teat to gain nourishment from. They will have a happy life on this farm, even within the confines that the farmers place on them, as will all the animals which stay there: but the good times have to come to an end eventually.

This was the product of Russian documentarian Viktor Kosakoskiy's interest in recording nature, though the cynics could debate precisely how natural the environment we witnessed here actually was. No matter where these animals go, there is evidence of humans: the pigs and cows even carry tags on their ears to identify them, not to other pigs and cows, but to their owners. Then there's the fact they stay in manmade buildings, and have their movements restricted by fences, some of them electrified.

But the, er, elephant in the room (so to speak - this isn't an elephant farm) is what will happen at the conclusion of the film. We all know that many people find pigs, cows and chickens mighty tasty, and we also know those people never consider the existences of the creatures they are eating, because why would you if you wanted to enjoy your meal? Gunda was not exactly a pro-vegan tract, it had to be said, as there was no sentimentalising of the animals we were watching, and carnivores could come away from it feeling their conscience was clear.

That is if they do not think about the consequences of their food too much. The chickens we see, apparently released onto an animal sanctuary that looks after beasts that have been part of the factory farm system, are not in great shape, with patchy feathers, a demeanour of low-level terror, and one of them is missing a leg, so it is pleasing to see them explore a field for what presumably is the first time in their lives. You may wonder why they were not slaughtered at least for a batch of chicken nuggets, where it doesn't matter if the birds were in a bad way as long as you could get some meat from them.

But that is because there is some compassion in farming, and for a while we can believe the animals are in the best place for them: they are being treated well, they have a location they can investigate, they are guaranteed meals, and so forth. But humanity can take away just as easily as it can giveth, which led us to how this drew to a close. Up until this point, the director has served up a selection of pin-sharp monochrome images of the subjects, which can be kind of fascinating if you're so inclined yet make no attempt to win over the less convinced. However, after spending all this time with the pig and her piglets (ominously, there is no daddy pig to be seen) the inevitable happens, and we are left with the image of Gunda essentially crying "My babies!" as she is abandoned thanks to the demands of modern meat eating. If that doesn't make you feel a little guilty, even if you don't eat pigs, cows and chickens, or any other animal, then congratulations on your heartlessness.

[GUNDA is in cinemas from June 4th.]
Reviewer: Graeme Clark


This review has been viewed 203 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

Review Comments (0)

Untitled 1

Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.

Latest Poll
Which star probably has psychic powers?
Laurence Fishburne
Nicolas Cage
Anya Taylor-Joy
Patrick Stewart
Sissy Spacek
Michelle Yeoh
Aubrey Plaza
Tom Cruise
Beatrice Dalle
Michael Ironside

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Darren Jones
Enoch Sneed
  Desbris M
Andrew Pragasam
  Paul Tuersley
  Chris Garbutt
  Sdfadf Rtfgsdf


Last Updated: