starring Marianne Jean-Baptiste, Hayley Squires, Leo Bill, Gwendoline Christie
written and directed by Peter Strickland
by Walter Chaw Peter Strickland's In Fabric is more Luca Guadagnino than Mario Bava, but there's connective tissue enough in both to ascribe a specific parentage. It understands that element of giallo that equates surface glamour, a certain luxurious hedonism, with various forms of infernal consumption. There's a culinary maxim about how you eat with your eyes first (and there's a correlation between eating and sex, of course), so the first way to read In Fabric is to say that it's a beautiful film, truly rapturous at times, to the point of being almost tactile. It reminded me in that way of the great Kim Jee-woon film A Tale of Two Sisters, which was so interested in colours and textures that you could almost feel them in the back of your eyes. Another way to look at In Fabric is as a spoof, a comedy that's consistently amusing and often hilarious, that takes as its central object of scorn the idea and practice of Capitalism as it's metastasized into a potentially world-ending cancer. Possibly the best way to read In Fabric, though, is as a continuation of the themes advanced by Gadagnino's Suspiria: women as unimaginably powerful and, for that, terrifying and essentially unknowable to the men who would try to destroy them.