Spoilers don’t have a reservation.
Some movies can’t be really explained by its initial premise, or a description of the events. But to describe a film as “it’s not about what you think” always does a disservice to the film, the viewer or both. This film’s review is going to sound either really pretentious or incredibly bland. The honest way that I would depict it for myself would be this an introspective, contemplative film that depends a lot on your attention and mood. You will need to be in a receptive mood to get into it, but if you do it can work.
Pig (2021) was directed by Michael Sarnoski based on a screenplay by Vanessa Block and Michael Sarnoski. Rob (Nicholas Cage) is a truffle hunter that lives isolated in the country with only his beloved pig for company. His only contact is young Amir (Alex Wolff) who supplies luxury ingredients to high-end restaurants. One night, Rob is assaulted and his pig is stolen. That’s the starting premise, but don’t expect an action-driven revenge film. This is a very subtle and deep drama.
Cage is basically stretching his acting chops to the max here, portraying a man who’s experience success and love to later experience loss and isolation. Although Cage is adamant about recovering what he’s lost, you do feel like we’re slowly discovering who he is or was in the past. The tone of the movie seems to slow down as it moves forward. I do feel there’s a little bit of a tone dissonance between some of the initial scenes, when we see an underground fighting ring (literally located underground) to a high-end restaurant where Rob gets to impart a life lesson.
That dissonance could be intentional. The colour palette and the scenarios do appear to reflect the nature of the truffle business. Rob’s journey reflects the dichotomy of the luxury items coming from humble beginnings to elegant elite. That being said, this is a slow journey where a lot of the story is told by observation and contemplation. Definitely meant of a specific audience, and I dare say you might have to be in a specific mood to get out the most of it.
Recommended with reservations to an audience appreciative of a slow build without any twists nor turns. Cage brings out the best of his physical acting where his silent demeanour speaks volumes more than words. Casual audiences or more action-driven audiences might be disappointed. It’s not an experimental film, but more of a mellow and subtle experience. Worth a watch if you’re in the right mood for it.
That will do for now.