What I love about short film collections is that they give bite-size tasters of what’s happening on the LGBT film scene; new styles, new modes of thinking, etc. Quite often in these films you see the genesis of emerging talent, whether it be directors, actors, cinematographers etc. I feel the same can be said with Violetas, the new release from TLA, the only difference being is that the same creative team are behind every story in this collection. This is the latest release from Argentinian based directing duo Marco Berger and Marcelo Mónaco, who you may remember as directors of Sexual Tension: Volatile (2012), which brilliant explored concepts of male bonding. This time round Berger and Mónaco are exploring lesbian seduction, and exploring it with real panache.
Of course the obvious purpose of these films is provide a little sexual titillation, but thankfully they go so much further than that; despite their short run time, each film takes in to consideration aspects such as narrative, characterisation, and technical sophistication, resulting in a high-quality, well-judged, and of course sexy, product. A variety of topics are covered in this collection; casual encounters, sexual confusion, denial, prostitution, the list goes on; ranging from naturalistic to highly artistic, there’s plenty of variety. In this collection you’ll see two guests of a hostel becoming more than just roommates, a keen shop assistant helping a woman uncertain about what dress to buy leading to more intimacy than they bargained for, strong passion starting to develop between girls during a picnic, a few women getting a little carried away whilst discussing films at a restaurant, and two high-class escorts discovering that they are attracted to each other when they are in bed with a client.
Stylistically these films are very simply constructed, and are generally very subtle, avoiding any stylistic choices that could be construed as gimmicky; the end result is strikingly mature and lush, fundamentally a real breath of fresh air.
Great cinematography, fantastic performances from the entire cast, and evocative score all combine to make an almost perfectly produced collection. Berger and Mónaco take eroticism into the rarely explored realms of artistry; none of the films presented here fail on the elements that make up a quality film and so cannot be considered amongst the usual range of mindless sex films. Each film in the Violetas collection contains so much more, and this collection stands strong on its many merits. My only complaint would be that the characters and stories are so well drawn that they deserve a much longer run time than they are allocated; that’s not to say that you feel short changed, but it is to say that each short film is so well executed that there is obvious room for expansion, and it would be welcome.
If this and Sexual Tension: Volatile is the sort of calibre of films Berger and Mónaco are producing, then I wholeheartedly hope they continue to produce more.
There is real humanity in these films; tenderness, humour, and of course eroticism are not overlooked. Unlike many LGBT releases, Violetas is a refreshing rounded experience. Artistic, excellently acted and produced, this collection is highly recommended. Beautifully sublime viewing, miss this at your peril.
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Buy Violetas here