[Last Film I Watched] Eating Raoul (1982)

Eating Raoul poster

Title: Eating Raoul
Year: 1982
Country: USA
Language: English
Genre: Comedy, Crime
Director: Paul Bartel
Writers:
Paul Bartel
Richard Blackburn
Music: Arlon Ober
Cinematography: Gary Thieltges
Cast:
Mary Woronov
Paul Bartel
Robert Beltran
Susan Saiger
John Shearin
Buck Henry
Richard Paul
Garry Goodrow
Allan Rich
Ed Begley Jr.
Don Steele
John Paragon
Edie McClurg
Rating: 6.9/10

Eating Raoul 1982

Paul Bartel’s cult murder comedy sets in the Tinseltown, husband-and wife Paul and Mary Bland (Woronov and Bartel) are decent citizens, the former is a rather ordinary-looking oenophile and wine dealer, the latter is a nurse with a lanky and sultry figure, quite an odd pair at first glance, their dream is to open a countryside restaurant, but what they encounter is nothing but epidemic decadence and underhanded chicanery, Paul is swindled out of his valuable wine collection, and Mary is met with flagrant sexual harassment when she tries to secure a loan from the bank. Moreover, in the building where they live, has been encroached by swingers’ orgy parties, even in their own apartment, Mary is at her peril of being raped from drunken and horny swingers.

Enough is enough! After Paul knocks off a swinger who is forcing himself on Mary with a frying pan, a revelation occurs! They finds out it is a lucrative way to get back at the corrupt world and consummate their dream. After counselling Doris the Dominatrix (Saiger), a regular practitioner in the kinky business, they decide to lure rich pervert clients to their place through newspaper advertisement, on the promise of executing whatever perversion they want, then kill them once at a time, and take their money (cash only)!

The film sticks to its absolute sterility of gore and violence, all the killings are neatly conducted with a “ magic” bop of the span, and refuses to compound the killing spree with the involvement of police or other parties under such contexts. Since soon Raoul (Beltran), a young wetback burglar, finds out their deal and blackmails to partake in the business by helping them dispose the bodies (thanks God, it is not sent directly to KFC or McDonald), but on the sly, he is a just another horn-dog involuntarily under Mary’s spell. Trysts will surface, but there is no need of slut-shaming, who can resist the purified hallucination from Thai sticks? After a droll episode in a swinger party, there will be only one man standing, and the title tells who is that man and what happens to that wily but despicable interloper (fry-panned).

Woronov, the former Warhol’s Factory Girl, a towering figure with all seriousness, also reluctantly but aptly exhibits her unbridled sexual magnetism thanks to a chain of custom-made costumes. And Bartel, snugly ensconces himself in Paul’s soft-spoken, self-effacing, nondescript persona, who is miraculously blessed with a gorgeous and reliable wife, and lives up to their ultimate dream. The film is an artful lampoon of the insalubrious culture of instant gratification and amorality, people are pigs, so why not put them on the dinner table too? Cannibalism finally has found its reasons!

Oscar 1982 Eating Raoul

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