Agnieszka Smoczynska's The Lure is enjoying a fair bit of buzz after a successful festival circuit and a subsequent release in cities worldwide. The praise is well-deserved; though it loosens the reins when it comes to structure, The Lure is a unique film that stands out from the cinematic landscape.
The Lure tells the story of two mermaid sisters named Silver (Marta Mazurek) and Gold (Michalina Olszańska) who, after bewitching a disco band, decide to join their nightclub act instead of eating them. Silver goes full "Little Mermaid" after falling in love with the band's bass player (Jakub Gierszal), and wants to trade in her tail for human legs. As for Gold, well, she just wants to eat humans. What follows is a wild, weird, sexy and touching coming-of-age parable chockfull of singing and dancing. And sequins. Lots of sequins.
Aesthetically, the film is a fantastic, kitschy blend of 1980s Soviet chic — a little grungy, a little seedy, but fabulous all the same. Part of its appeal is how it pairs the grotesque with the gorgeous, as upbeat musical numbers about moving to the big city are interspersed with dark lullabies on devouring human flesh.
Wokalistka Krysia (Kinga Preis), the leader of the nightclub's band, is at first happy to play den mother to Silver and Gold, showing them the ropes and teaching them how to exploit their sexuality for paying customers. But as the sisters' popularity begins to overshadow her own, the film introduces some interesting themes via song and dance numbers on the fear of aging and irrelevancy, sexual agency in a patriarchal environment, and the trials of young love.
Yet, while The Lure isn't totally coherent, but the film's unique, freewheeling, colourful style makes up for this more often than not. (Films We Like)